Beccue encouraged by dugout comment during regional game

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By Andrew Harner

KINMUNDY – When senior Derek Harmeier stepped onto the field to pitch the seventh inning for South Central last Wednesday, some players in the St. Elmo dugout said they were happy to see the Cougars’ top pitcher back on the mound.

And though Harmeier induced a lightly-hit grounder and struck out the final two batters of the 1-0 South Central win, Eagles coach Ryan Beccue was pleased to see his team wanting to compete against the best available player.

“If you’re scared at all, you’re not going to do the job,” Beccue said. “When I heard that, I was glad, because in the past, that’s a comment we don’t make.

“If we want to beat somebody, we want to beat their best.”

The loss was the end to a successful season for the Eagles, who ended with a 16-13 record. If not for a losing skid in the middle of the season, St. Elmo may have won 20 games.

That positive momentum should parlay into the fall, when the Eagles will return all but two of their players.

Those two players, Kase Stolte and Weston Parks, however, have been on the team for four years and are pretty much irreplaceable as individuals.

“Kase and Weston have been here for four years,” Beccue said. “I appreciate all the time they have put in.

“They want to win as bad as anybody, and I know it’s hurting them right now.”