CIC Tournament Title Game: South 5, Chugiak 0

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Posted by Van Williams, ALB Media Director | May 27, 2023

Ben Neuberger dominated on the mound as the left-handed pitcher threw a 4-hit shutout and allowed only two runners to reach third base to help the Wolverines remain the only champion in the three-year history of the CIC Tournament.

South improved to 6-0 all-time in the tournament and 16-2 this season, clinching a No. 1 seed for next week’s ASAA Division I state tournament in Sitka. Chugiak (13-7) secured a No. 2 seed.

Neuberger was lights out on an overcast night with the lights on at Mulcahy Stadium. He struck out six of the first dozen batters and held the Mustangs hitless in eight at-bats with runners in scoring position.

He had two 1-2-3 innings and three more when he allowed just one baserunner. He also fielded his position with three assists.

Neuberger also reached base all three times on walks, with two of them being intentional. He walked the hard way in the first inning to set up the game-winning run.

Carson Maltby, who is playing with a cast to protect a broken thumb, replaced him on the base paths and came around to score on a balk, sac bunt and Gavin Alexander’s RBI single.

In the third inning, Landon Drumm reached on a fielder’s choice, stole second and came around to score on Kaden Bevegni’s RBI single. Drumm was a thorn on Chugiak’s side as the outfielder went 2-for-4 with an RBI and tournament-tying four stolen bases.

South salted the game away in the sixth inning with three runs, thanks in large part to Chase Mascelli’s safety squeeze RBI and Drumm’s RBI single. Another run was scored on an error, the only blunder for either side.

South’s win avenged its loss earlier this season to Chugiak, which snapped the Wolverines’ state-record 52-game winning streak dating back to 2019.

Chugiak managed hits by Michael Boudreau, Gabe Gruszynski, Landon Luebke and Preston Rau.

The first three hits came in the first six plate appearances as Chugiak came out swinging. But Neuberger settled down nicely. The only hit he gave up over the final five innings was a pinch-hit single to Rau.