Portner fires a no-hitter for Cathedral

Staff photo by Steve Muscatello New Ulm Cathedral starting pitcher Aaron Portner tosses a pitch during the Greyhounds’ win against Sleepy Eye St. Mary’s Tuesday at Johnson Park in New Ulm.

NEW ULM — Aaron Portner didn’t let a wild pregame bullpen session bother him on Tuesday.

When it came down to business, Portner was throwing strikes and working quickly. He watched his team score 10 runs in the first inning and he did the rest, throwing a five-inning no-hitter against Sleepy Eye St. Mary’s at Johnson Park in the first game for New Ulm Cathedral on Tuesday. Cathedral won the game 12-0 in five innings before losing to Springfield 1-0 in Leavenworth later in the day (See area roundup for game details)

The lefty struck out five in his first career varsity no-hitter. He walked Nick Labat in the fourth inning, but he retired the final six batters he faced to finish the game in just over an hour.

“I felt good today, just throwing strikes and knowing that I had a defense behind me,” Portner said.

After Portner retired the first three batters he faced, he watched his team score 10 times in the bottom of the first off of St. Mary’s starter Dallas Bauer.

Bauer took the loss, going three innings and allowing 11 runs on 10 hits.

The Greyhounds got a pair of RBIs from Chris Knowles in the first inning and Portner cleared the bases in his second at-bat of the inning when his single got by the St. Mary’s center fielder, scoring three runs to put the Greyhounds up 10-0.

At that point, Portner just had to throw strikes with the big lead.

“I had a little wild bullpen to start, but when I got on the mound, I could feel it right away, I was hitting the mitt pretty good,” Portner said. “That [lead] helps a ton, because you know that if you do make a mistake, you’ve got the run support back there.”

Cathedral scored another run in the second inning and added one more run in the fourth inning.

Josh Seidl had two hits, a double and two runs scored along with an RBI and Chris Knowles scored a pair of runs and had two RBIs. Portner had two hits and Noah Wilmes had two RBIs.