Hawks lose another one to Beavers

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Hawks lose another one to Beavers

Hawks closing Pitcher Daniel Vitoria on the mound against American River College. The team lost in the conference game 5-2 on March 4.

Hawks closing Pitcher Daniel Vitoria on the mound against American River College. The team lost in the conference game 5-2 on March 4.

Kainoa Nunez

Hawks closing Pitcher Daniel Vitoria on the mound against American River College. The team lost in the conference game 5-2 on March 4.

Kainoa Nunez

Kainoa Nunez

Hawks closing Pitcher Daniel Vitoria on the mound against American River College. The team lost in the conference game 5-2 on March 4.

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In a race to reach the playoffs, the Hawks baseball team battled the Beavers of American River College, which was their third matchup in the past six days.

They lost 5-2 in a heartbreaking conference matchup on March 4.

This was their last meeting for this season, and the Hawks had home field advantage.

“We’re comfortable [playing] at home, we don’t really get off the bus playing too well, so it’s good,” outfielder Burle Dixon said.

Hawks pitcher/utility John Treat gave up four runs and a homerun from outfielder Justin Bejarano at the top of the second inning.

That would allow the Beavers to take a 4-0 lead.

The Hawks answered back by utility Damien Chavez hitting a single in midfield, and advancing to third base from another single by outfielder Jared Alameida. Infielder Alex Crouch flied out to centerfield which sacrificed an out to let Chavez score.

Alameida stole for second, then ran for homebase to make the score 4-2.

The Hawks had the momentum, and Treat was not dwelling on any previous mistake after that inning.

“It’s all about pitching, playing defense and executing,” Head Coach Don Mico said. “We didn’t do that this series, but we have to move forward.”

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Hawks had Dixon and Lucas on base with two outs, and first baseman/left hand pitcher Joey Pankratz had the spotlight to make a big play. But Beavers pitcher Freddy May struck Pankratz out.

At the top of the sixth inning outfielder/first baseman Logan Hall hit a single, advanced to second on a balk play, then third baseman/split squad Will

Floyd hit a single in midfield to let Hall extend the score 5-2.

“They hit the ball [well], and you can’t get mentally beat and we’re all young on this team, so it’s a challenge to work with,” pitcher AJ Wood said.

There were missed opportunities that would’ve prevented the Beavers from extending the score, but the Hawks were still trailing by three runs.

Going into the seventh inning, Hawks changed pitchers to put in Daniel Vitoria to finish the game.

Vitoria started off strong by allowing zero runs and shutting down the Beavers in a solid three and out inning.

“We just got to [keep] grinding, that’s all that is,” Vitoria said.

But that wasn’t enough from Vitoria’s performance because the defense of the Beavers were shutting down the Hawks on offense and pitching.

More missed opportunities and a lack of timely hitting was a theme for the Hawks as they allowed eight runners on base in the game.

They had their last opportunity in the bottom of the ninth inning as Lucas grounded into double play to get outfielder Brett Gieseke to run to second.

Dixon had to hit either a double or possibly triple to get both Hawks home, but Dixon got struck out. That made the final score 5-2.

Mico noted the difficulties in the aftermath that the team wasn’t able to overcome, and they have practice tomorrow before their next game on Tuesday.

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