Game one wasn't the outcome that nine game winner Matt Stafford had in mind but he made up for it in the familiar relief mode he was thrust into today as he took over for Chris Loeb in the sixth inning.
Bases loaded isn't the way a reliever wants to come into a game but Stafford worked magic today with a first pitch line out double play and a ground out three pitches later to get out of the inning with just one run scoring. Stafford pitched three innings of one hit three strikeout ball to stabilize the game for the Hawks after Chris Loeb got into trouble with the first three batters reaching base.
Jeremy Caldwell started for the Hawks and pitched the first four innings without giving up a hit before the Bulldogs got to him although it was a hit batter and a walk, not power hits against him.
The Hawks scored two in the first on a Jordan Yu single, an error that put Robert Daugherty on, and a walk to Brian Morley. Chris Loeb grounded out scoring Yu and Nicco Toni singled in Daugherty. The Hawks were retired with the final out in the first with the bases loaded on a play that didn't appear as close as it was called.
In the fifth the Hawks matched the deuce the Bulldogs put up in the top of the inning on a walk to Daniel Enes, Yu getting hit by a pitch, one of two times on the day for him, a walk to Daugherty, and a sacrifice fly by Morley scoring Enes. Yu then scored on a wild pitch by the Bulldogs.
In the Sixth after the Bulldogs posted a single run, the Hawks came back and broke it open with four runs in their usual style. Brooks Day singled with one out, and Enes was hit by a pitch, one of two times for him as well. Yu singled to load the bases, his second of two hits in the game. Morley then singled in Enes and Yu for the first two runs of the inning. Stafford who was almost pinch hit for, then singled past first base bringing in Daugherty with theHawks final run.
Brett Bloomfield also chipped in with a hit for CRC.
Yu finished up in the ninth for the Hawks as they move on in the CCCAA playoffs with the win. While still to be determined, the Hawks might well host San Joaquin Delta at Conway Field next week end in the same format as this week with the opener on Friday at two pm and we will have confirmation soon.