Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – It would have been easy for Cade Obermueller to become distracted.
The City High senior was tasked with pitching in the quarterfinal round of the Class 4A state tournament on the same day Major League Baseball was conducting the third and final day of its amateur draft.
And while the call from an MLB club that some foresaw for Obermueller did not arrive, he was undeterred in an impressive outing Tuesday at Duane Banks Field.
“I was ready for this game the whole time,” Obermueller said after allowing just one hit in 3 2/3 scoreless innings as the second-seeded Little Hawks routed No. 7-seeded Indianola in five innings, 10-0. “With the draft, I was just letting it happen. Whatever happens, happens. I was ready for this game. I was preparing for this and that is what I was going to do.”
Obermueller was undoubtedly the recipient of good advice in that area as his father, Wes Obermueller, was a former big-leaguer in his own right.
While the younger Obermueller did hit two batters and walk one, he struck out five and was able to settle in quickly after the City High offense erupted for five first-inning runs.
“When the offense plays like that, it just takes all the weight off your back,” Obermueller said. “It is such a relief. We are hot right now. The bats are hot. It is just great. It’s a relief to be out there pitching with a lead.”
Obermueller – a University of Iowa signee – did plenty of damage at the plate, as well.
After his second-inning single drove in a run, he doubled home two more in the fourth that staked his team to a 10-0 lead and set up the eventual five-inning run rule.
“We swung it right out the gates,” City High coach Brian Mitchell said. “I know that is what you hope for. You do all this thinking about how you are going to handle situations. Cade, quite honestly, wasn’t his best tonight. There has been a lot going on with him. But just for us to come out right away, just great at-bats right away. We swung it really well. Made the plays.”
Seniors Joey Bouska and Gable Mitchell each reached base three times and scored three runs. Mitchell also drove in the first run of the game with a single that jump-started the five-run first inning.
“It kind of helped with the nerves,” said Gable Mitchell, another University of Iowa baseball signee. “Everybody, coming into the game, has butterflies and getting up big really helps deal with that.”
Junior Alex Knudtson and senior Isaiah Svoboda each posted two-run singles in the first inning. Senior Carter Seaton collected two hits, including an RBI double in the fourth as the Little Hawks created a lot of chaos on the base paths with base runners in all four innings.
“Pressure, pressure, pressure,” Bouska said. “Make them make plays. Make them make outs. Make them get us out.”
Freshman Talon Young pitched the final inning and a third for City High and surrendered just one hit with a strikeout as Indianola bowed out with a record of 26-13.
By not exceeding the 65-pitch limit mandated by the Iowa High School Athletic Association, Obermueller could conceivably pitch again if the Little Hawks are fortunate enough to reach the state championship game on Friday.
In order to get there, City High (32-8) will need to defeat sixth-seeded West Des Moines Dowling (26-14) in a state semifinal Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
“They’re a really good team,” Brian Mitchell said. “They obviously came out and swung the bats really, really well. I know they had some injuries throughout the season too, kind of like us. But they can swing it. We’ll be ready to go.”
Indianola 000 00 – 0 2 1
City High 520 3x – 10 10 0
W – Cade Obermueller L – Brady Blake
2B – ICH: Carter Seaton, Cade Obermueller
3B – ICH: Joey Bouska