The Ottumwa Courier

Sports

June 23, 2014

McElderry slams door on Sigourney Tournament

SIGOURNEY – Last summer, Conner McElderry hit a grand total of four home runs for the Cardinal baseball team. Entering the Sigourney Baseball Tournament on Saturday, McElderry had sent just one ball out the park – three shy of last season’s total.

It took five hours and two games for McElderry to make up that deficit.

On a day that was, admittedly, a career day for the Comet senior, McElderry hit the ball over the Sigourney baseball diamond fence not once, not twice, but three times on Saturday. The last two drove in six runs, proving to be very big in what turned out to be a 15-10 slugfest with the host Savages in the tournament’s consolation game.

“After the second one, the guys were joking with me before my next at-bat and asking me if I was going to send the next one out,” McElderry said. “I just looked and over and told the guys I wasn’t going to think about that. I just wanted to go up each time to try and get a hit to help the team.”

“I think those helped the team a lot.”

McElderry not only slammed Sigourney with his bat, slugging a pair of three-run homers as Cardinal scored the first 10 runs of the consolation matchup, but also slammed the door on the resilient Savages on the mound. Sigourney twice cut Cardinal’s 10-run lead in half, the last time coming during a sixth-inning rally that would bring the tying run out to the on-deck circle.

McElderry responded by retiring dangerous Sigourney slugger Peyton Crawford with the bases loaded in the sixth. After striking out the Savages final batter in the seventh, McElderry looked more relieved than ready to celebrate Cardinal’s eighth win of the season.

“I was getting a little tired out there,” McElderry joked after recording his third strikeout to finish his second inning of relief. “Sigourney’s going to be a really good ball club over the next few years.”

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