Rain delays are over and Jacks baseball is back
On an overgrown high school field in Sacramento, the Jacks were able to come back from an opening game defeat and win the final two games against the Sacramento State Hornets.
The Jacks dropped game one 6-5 in a hard-fought nail-biter. Freshman Chris Friedley started on the mound and needed to set the tempo. With emotions high, Friedley was unable to find the strike zone and provided the Hornets early baserunners.
The Hornets cashed in on their first opportunity. Friedley managed four and third innings while walking six, and allowing six runs on six hits, an eerie start to say the least. The Jacks then turned to Sophomore Lorenzo Hernandez, who allowed just one hit over one and a third, while striking out two.
Hernandez also added a single and a key RBI to help the Jacks rally in the sixth to cut the deficit to two. Sophomore Mateo Hamm worked a walk to lead off the seventh and final inning and worked his way to third.
Senior Shane McNair was able to knock him in with a two-out base hit to cut the lead to one. The Jacks couldn’t capitalize, however, giving the Hornets game one.
Head Coach and HSU alum Tanner Wise was content with game one.
“I liked the way we started the series,” Wise said. “But honestly we should have won game one, we just didn’t capitalize on our opportunities.”
The Jacks took game two 10-4 with help from Hernandez, McNair, Hamm, and juniors Adrian Mercado, and Alejandro Caravalho.
“He was lights out. The fastball was working, and he was able to build off it all day, and gave us a lot of momentum heading into game three.”
The Jacks tallied three runs in the third, and another in the fourth. These runs allowed them to relax and play defense. This is precisely what they needed to do to support Hamm, who struck out 13, while only allowing four during his complete game.
Sophomore first baseman Jacob Adams spoke highly of Hamm’s outing.
“He was lights out,” Adams said. “The fastball was working, and he was able to build off it all day, and gave us a lot of momentum heading into game three.”
The Jacks were able to pad their lead in the sixth by adding six runs by putting the ball in play and capitalizing off errors made by the Hornets. The Jacks played excellent defense and were able to tie the series at one, with one final game to play.
Game three was a battle, as both teams managed a run in the first, and four more in the third. With the game tied at five, the Jacks managed to score two more in the fourth, and never looked back.
McNair added three hits, and three runs on the day that stretched the lead to 9-6 in the sixth with a key two-run single. The Jacks were again helped by Hamm, who added three hits, three runs, and an RBI to conclude his influential series.
Caravalho added two hits and was able to pitch a complete game while surviving 16 hits, and six walks while only allowing seven runs.
Wise was complimentary of Caravalho’s outing. Wise said Caravalho did everything the team needed him to do.
“We needed him to throw as many innings as possible and give our defense a chance to make plays,” Wise said. “He survived out there.”
Game three ended 9-7 in favor of the short-handed Jacks to give them their first series victory of the season. The Jacks will look to build off the strong road performance during home games against Stanford the weekend of May 4.
Stay tuned for start times, field locations, and come out to see HSU’s club baseball.