Baseball: Streaking ‘Hawks win eighth straight

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By Andrea Sidlauskas

The Warhawk baseball team continued in its quest for supremacy Sunday, after sweeping UW-Superior at Prucha Field in Miller Stadium.

The ’Hawks, ranked No. 16 in the latest American Baseball Coaches Association Division III poll, extending their winning streak to eight with their victories in a total of four games that began Friday night.

In the first game of the series on Friday, the ’Hawks batted around in the first inning, boasting an early five-run lead over the Yellowjackets. Thanks to a wild pitch and RBI single by sophomore Marty Herum in the bottom of the fourth, the ’Hawks were able to capitalize and extend their lead to 7-0.

Attempting a comeback, the Yellowjackets managed to rally two runs in the sixth-inning and one in the seventh, which made the score 7-3. However, Brock Liston, junior reliever for the ’Hawks, brought their momentum to an end, striking out two and allowing only two hits. The win went to senior starter Quintin Zander, who also struck out two.

The ’Hawks faced the Yellowjackets again Saturday, reigning victorious by way of the 10-run rule after seven innings.

After another 5-0 start in favor of the ’Hawks in the first inning, the Yellowjackets rallied back in the top of the third, scoring three runs off of a triple and took the lead in the fourth, advancing the score to 7-5.

The ’Hawks answered back with hits by Mikole Pierce, Steve Bartlein and JT Schneider in the bottom of the fifth. Sophomore catcher Mike Mierow crushed a three-run home run to regain the lead, making the score 9-7.

Dylan Friend began the bottom of the sixth inning with a solo home run, which ignited a walk, a single, and two doubles by fellow teammates. The ’Hawks further improved the score to 15-7.

Jared Fon and Herum each homered in the bottom of the seventh inning and secured the win with a final score of 17-7.

The ’Hawks clashed with the Yellowjackets for the last time this season in a doubleheader on Sunday.  Game one of the matchup required the ’Hawks to come back from behind twice to defeat the Yellowjackets 7-5.

Down 3-0 in the bottom of the third inning, Friend hit a solo home run, which was followed by two more runs scored in the fourth-inning, to tie the game 3-3. The Yellowjackets were able to reclaim the lead with two runs in the top of the fifth, but Pierce and Bartlein’s RBIs in the bottom of the inning gave the ’Hawks a 6-5 advantage.

Herum’s solo home run in the seventh-inning solidified the ’Hawks’ win with an ending score of 7-5.

The ’Hawks took another 5-0 lead over the Yellowjackets in game two of the doubleheader, after scoring two runs in the first inning and three in the second. The Yellowjackets, determined to rally back, answered with five runs in the top of the third to tie the game.

Following a defensive error in the bottom of the eighth, the ’Hawks gave up their lead and were down by one. But Bartlein’s single with bases loaded had scored two runs, preceding a sacrifice bunt by  Schneider to score one more. Game two ended with a final score of 11-8.

The ’Hawks improved to 15-3 overall and remain undefeated in the WIAC conference with a record of 6-0. When asked about his expectations for the upcoming season, head coach John Vodenlich expressed confidence in his team. “Anything less than a deep run in the playoffs would be a huge disappointment,” he said.