Caleb Riordan | Ameritime Sports Writer
The Hillsboro Hawks went 1-1 on Saturday and 2-2 overall in the Jackson tournament.
Like Friday, the Hawks started the day off well in their first game against Kelly.
The Hawks got started in the top of the second inning. They worked to get one runner on in the inning that later came around to score. Hillsboro led 1-0.
The Hawks tacked on three more runs in the third inning. Elly Eckrich hit an RBI-double that scored Alanah Dunphy. The next at bat, Ellie Bartlett hit a single to center field that scored Eckrich and Hailey Genge. That made it 4-0 Hawks.
Kelly came alive and rallied to push three runs across the plate in the bottom of the fourth to cut Hillsboro’s lead to one run.
The Hawks added some insurance in the sixth when Sara Stokes scored on a fielder’s choice.
Kelly put up one more run in the last inning off of a Hillsboro error. They fell just short and the Hawks secured a 5-4 victory.
Bartlett was 2-3 at the plate and had two RBIs. Lauren Nichols, Alex Wick, Stokes and Eckrich all had one hit. Eckrich also pitched the entire game for the Hawks. She threw 94 in seven innings, allowed five hits, four runs and struck out five.
The Hawks’ second game of the day came against Cape Central.
Hillsboro jumped out to a big lead early. Evans hit a single in the second inning that scored a run.
Hillsboro extended its lead with a big third inning and Stokes got the rally started. She hit a single to right field that scored Genge and Bartlett. Evans then hit a sacrifice fly that scored Dean and Kora King hit a double to score another run. The Hawks led 5-0 after three.
Cape Central started to chip away at the lead and scored its first run in the fourth. Then it fell apart in the fifth for Hillsboro.
“We had innings that we did not continue to add runs,” Stokes said. “It made the games closer than they could have been.”
Cape capitalized on some Hawks’ mistakes and rallied to push across six runs in the inning. Cape took a 7-5 lead and the Hawks could not recover.
“We came into the tournament on a high note but kind of cooled off,” head coach Kevin Lucas said. “We played some pretty good competition and typically I would be pleased to come out of it 2-2 but we definitely should’ve gone 3-1 on the weekend. I think that playing eight games in six days just caught up to us.”
Abby Clay was 2-3 at the plate and led in hits. Bartlett, Stokes, Evans and King all had one hit. Stokes and Evans had two RBIs each.
Wick started the game in the circle for the Hawks. She pitched four and two-thirds innings allowing six hits and seven runs, but only two of the runs were earned. She also struck out two and walked two.
“One of the biggest takeaways from those games this weekend is that we cannot let up,” Stokes said.
The 2-2 tournament weekend brought Hillsboro’s record to 11-7. The Hawks’ next test is Monday, Sep. 28 against Jefferson R-7.