ARGOS — There were no surprises in opening round sectional action at Argos with the #4 ranked Dragons getting a win over Culver by an 11-1 final.
Coming in it was a game that might have been decided on paper but both coaches were after a different kind of outcome. Todd VanDerWeele of Argos looking for a focused resolve from his veteran team and Culver’s Mark Gordon looking for a “never say die” attitude from his freshman dominated squad. Both walked away satisfied — VanDerWeele to a semi-final match-up with Winamac, Gordon to an offseason that looks brighter.
The tone was set early when thirty seconds into the game Ted Redinger took a pass from Pablo Mata for his first of three goals on the night.
“You can’t get down that quickly against a team like Argos,” said Gordon of the quick deficit. “I was really happy with the effort in the second half.”
“We came out and had two big wins last week against very strong teams and we talked about it Saturday that we wanted to come out tonight and play to that level,” said VanDerWeele. “We hit that and started subbing some kids which is really good for us getting that experience. Considering how the game went I thought our guys did a good job with that.”
The Dragons hit early and very often in the first half. Redinger had the hat trick in the first 20 minutes and Mata had a pair of assists in that time.
Jeremiah Riddle would end the night with a pair of goals, Jake Stults with a goal and assist Caleb Ellis with a pair of assists and maybe the most interesting goal of the first half was junior Caden Nifong hitting cousin Owen Nifong for a score at the 35th minute of the first half.
Ben Rangel, Shane Stevens, and Wyatt Tanner also found the net for Argos.
The win allowed VanDerWeele to get varsity experience for a number of players that could pay dividends for the Dragons as the season moves on.
“Three kids got their first varsity experience and that was good for them,” said VanDerWeele. “They played really well. We got a chance to rest some kids and with the intensity of last week that is really good for us too.”
“The last week has given us some confidence going forward,” he said. “Hopefully we can carry that on this week and beyond.”
The Cavs refused to give up in the second half. With an almost insurmountable deficit, they came out in the second half with the kind of approach that bodes well for the future.
The Cavs hit their only goal of the night at the 75th minute when freshman Ethan Keller drove home a pass from junior Shane Stevens for their only score.
“I had six freshmen on the field at one point and that’s good for them,” said Gordon. “Our freshman scored a goal. Two of my starters were out — one with an injury and another of my seniors home with the flu — so we were pretty young.”
The veteran Dragons have their coach feeling confident — at least for the moment.
“Last week I wasn’t sure, after that I feel really good,” said VanDerWeele. “Our seniors feel the fact that every game could be their last. I’m really excited right now. I feel we are in a promising position.”
Culver ends their season at 1-12-1. Argos (12-4) moves on to face Winamac in round two of sectional action at Eugene Snyder Field in Argos on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
•ARGOS 11, CULVER 1
at Eugene Snyder Field
Argos — Ted Redinger (Pablo Mata) 1st
Argos — Devon Allen (Pablo Mata) 8th
Argos — Redinger (Caleb Ellis) 11th
Argos — Redinger (Ellis) 18th
Argos — Jake Stults (Mike Richard) 20th
Argos — Jeremiah Riddle (Caden Nifong) 31st
Argos — Ben Rangel 33rd
Argos — Owen Nifong (C. Nifong) 35th
Argos — Shane Stevens (Stults) 38th
Argos — Riddle 39th
Argos — Wyatt Tanner (C. Nifong) 60th
Culver — Trayden Schrimsher 75th
Shots on goal: Argos-20, Culver-1
Saves: Culver-9 (Ethan Keller)
Corners: Argos 12
Records: Argos 12-4, Culver 1-12-1