In the first full week of high school baseball, the Hillsboro Varsity team played two times. The first game was a rough outing for the squad, as they got behind early due to some sloppy defense and never caught up with Jackson, and the second was a thrilling seventh-inning comeback to beat St. Pius. With the win, the first of the season, the Hawks are now 1-2.
Against Jackson, on Monday, March 21st, Hillsboro fell behind early 3-0 after the first inning, and 6-1 after the fourth. The Hawks had their best chance offensively in the fifth but only managed to net two more runs, as the Indians poured it on with three more in the top of the seventh. The Hawks ended up losing 9-3.
On the bump for the Hawks was right-hander Andrew Chaves. He lasted three and two-thirds and gave up six runs on five hits, with only two strikeouts, before handing it over to Zach Reynolds who finished the game in relief.
Offensively, there wasn’t much doing, as Hillsboro only managed two hits, one from Jaxin Patterson and the other from Keynen Drury, who also had an RBI. Defensively, the team didn’t do themselves any favors by committing three errors.
With three days to get over the first game’s lackluster performance, the team took the field at St. Pius, on Friday, March 25th. Again, the Hawks found themselves down a run after the first inning but tied it up in the fourth 1-1. Then, the offense came to life in the sixth as the team rallied for three runs.
Unfortunately, the team apparently didn’t have time to repair their gloves after Monday’s defensive melee and committed three more errors. This led to a big four-run sixth inning for St. Pius who looked to have the game well in hand as Hillsboro’s bats seemed to have cooled off.
Down 5-4 going into the top of the seventh, the Hawks were looking at their third consecutive loss. However, the boys found a way to get it done and scored two to take the lead 6-5, a lead they would hold on to for three more outs to earn their first victory of the season.
Chaves started the game again for the Hawks but lasted only two-thirds of an inning. Getting the win for the team was Blake Larson, who came in and only pitched two-thirds as well, but he struck out one, gave up zero walks, and only allowed one run on one hit. Peyton Willeford, Gavin Hite and Reynolds all took a turn on the mound, with Reynolds getting the save.
Hillsboro finally had a strong offensive showing. Andrew Brody had a stellar performance with three hits in four at-bats, picking up three RBIs, and scoring a run as well. Two more Hawks turned in multi-hit games, as Austin Romaine and Kobe Stacy each had two hits. Romaine crossed the plate three times as well.
The win marks a high point for the team thus far, and even though the season is still in its infancy, notching that first W always feels great. The Hawks can now take that momentum, and direct it towards their next game, taking place this Friday, April 1st, against Gateway Legacy Academy.