The Hawks batting was hot to start the game off. In the first inning the Hawks jumped ahead of Merced 7-0. The bottom of first inning started off by Kasey Chapan getting walked, and Josh Cosio getting hit by a pitch. Next up was Tyler Blake, with Chapan on 2nd base and Cosio on 1st base. Blake slams the ball for a double, bringing in Chapan and Cosio home for the score. Cody Morris (pictured right) is up next and gets walked. Following him is Drake Atlee, Atlee connects with a single, and makes the bases loaded for the Hawks. Joshua Pigg is up to bat and he also hits a single, sending Blake to home for the score. Elway Santisteven is at bat, and gets out on a hit back to the pitcher. However it allows Morris to get home making the score 4-0 with only one out. After a couple batters later it is the top of the line up and Chapan is back up to bat with the bases loaded. Chapan connects for a single, advacning Pigg and Atlee home, making the score 6-0 and 2 outs in the first innning. Merced coaches call a timeout and switch pitcher Noah Gapp with Brian Womack. Cosio is up to bat again for the second time in the frist inning and he hits a single bringing home Michael Chavarria. The inning ends with a strikeout, and the Hawks find themselves with a commdaning lead, 7-0.
The next three innings both defenses played well not giving up a run until the 4th, when the Hawks added to their lead. Morris lead off in the bottom of 4th inning for the Hawks. Morris singled and next up was Atlee, who also hit a single advancing Morris to 3rd base due to an error by the Merced deffense. Pigg comes up big time next at bat with a solid double, advancing Morris home for the score. Unfortunalty this inning was ended on the next 4 at bats.
The Hawks defense played very discipline and executed perfectly for 8 innings. It wasnt until the 9th inning when Merced started to put a rally together on offense. The Hawks would change pitchers 2 times in this inning. Ian Chandler would start the top of the 9th inning striking out Jimbo Pernetti. The next 2 batters, Garret Boothe and Robbie Dallas were walked. Bryan Rubalcaba flies out to center field, making there 2 outs. The Hawks switch pitchers and Rod Mackey is up on the mound. Next up is Lorenzo Maestri, he singles and advances Boothe home for the first score for Merced. Ryan Emerald gets hit by a pitch and the bases are loaded. Shota Nagatomi sinlges at the next at bat, sending Maestri and Dallas home, making the score 8-3. However, it was to little to late for Merced and the next batter flied out to right field, sealing up the win for the Hawks.
David Smith led the Hawks from the mound for 5 innings; facing 20 batters, allowing 4 hits, and finishing with 2 strikeouts. 5 players pitched for the Hawks during the duration of the game; Shane Martin, Pigg, Chandler, and Mackey. Pigg pitched one inning, the top of the 8th, and had a very impreesive performance, facing 3 batters and striking them all out. The pitching unit combined, finished the game with 6 strikeouts, and allowing 7 hits.
The next match up for the Hawks is Monday, February 10th at Merced at 2:30 PM. The Hawks hope to have the same explosive start on offense, and another solid performance on defense, to look to advance to 4-0.