April 25, 2007
By Jeff Honza
SAUGET, Ill. - Head Coach Dan Callahan earned his 500th career victory when Southern Illinois University (25-15) blanked Saint Louis (10-31), 7-0, earlier tonight in a wood bat game at GCS Ballpark.
Callahan moved to 500-518-2 in his 19th year as a NCAA Division I head coach. He is now the sixth head coach in MIssouri Valley Conference history to record 500 career wins.
"I feel very fortunate to have been in the game long enough to win 500 games and honored to have coached the fine young men I've been around," said Callahan.
Both teams were scoreless through six innings until Dean Cademartori laid down a bunt single just inside the third base line to ignite a three-run seventh for the Dawgs.
The Salukis tacked on four more runs to blow the game open in the eighth.
Scott Elmendorf reached on an error and went to second on an ensuing single by Cademartori.
Cademartori then stole second and Billiken catcher Bill Musselman's throw went off shortstop Ryan Bennett's glove, allowing Elmendorf to score.
Shortly after Chris Crank struck out, Lairson doubled home Cademartori. Another Billiken error led to two more unearned runs after that to give SIU a 7-0 lead.
Brad Lawrence (3-0) was credited with the win after striking out three and allowing one hit in two scoreless innings of relief.
Offensively, SIU outhit SLU, 8-5, with Cademartori leading the way with two hits. He snapped a streak of 15-straight hitless at-bats by going 2-for-5 with two runs scored.
"I'm happy for Dean," said Callahan. "He's been pressing a bit lately. It was nice to see him take some good at-bats tonight."
Defensively, SLU committed a season-high six errors, which led to six unearned runs on the night.
Meanwhile, SIU went without an error for the sixth time this year.
SIU beat SLU for the fifth-straight time in a wood bat game, outscoring the Billikens,. 37-4, in that stretch.
SIU returns to MVC play when it hosts Missouri State this weekend. The Salukis and Bears open a three-game series Friday at 3 p.m., CST.