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Heath Hawks drop regional baseball finals game one, 2-0

By Keith Thompson (Stephen McClung photo) DUNCANVILLE – Baseball can be a cruel sport at times. The Heath Hawks received first-hand experience of that Thursday night by suffering a hard luck 2-0 defeat to the Mesquite Poteet Pirates at Duncanville Park in the opening game of the Region II finals. Game two is Friday at 7:30 pm, back at Duncanville Park.

In virtually every statistical category, Heath clearly appeared to be the better team. However, Poteet managed to find a way to push across two unearned runs in the bottom of the third inning and they held on to that lead for the remainder of the game. Hawk starting pitcher Jovan Hernandez battled heroically on the mound against Poteet’s Chad Young, who had ended Frisco Wakeland’s season in the semi-finals last week.

Hernandez held the Pirates to two hits, both singles, and was dominating as Poteet appeared over matched at the plate. Young, while holding Heath scoreless, yielded six hits and wiggled out of several jams by making key pitches and by some sloppy Hawk base running. Heath had runners in scoring position in five of the seven innings but could not capitalize on those opportunities.

In the top of the third, the Hawks ran themselves out of an inning by getting a runner trapped off of third base after a force play at second. Instead of the Hawks having Jake Thompson bat with runners on first and third, the inning ended. Thompson led off the fourth with a single and, one out later was sitting at third base, following Jake Bledsoe’s double into the left field corner.

Unfortunately, Heath failed to score as Poteet pulled their infield in to cut down a run at the plate. Nick Peterson hit a chopper to first base where Blake Griffin fielded the ball preventing Thompson from advancing. However, the Hawk courtesy runner at second base, who was running for the catcher Bledsoe, took off for third oblivious to the fact that Thompson was still there. A rundown ensued and the Hawks were easily tagged out, ending a prime scoring chance.

Hernandez turned in a very good performance but ended up with nothing to show for it but a much undeserved loss. Heath must eliminate the few mistakes it made if it hopes to extend the series to a third game.

Jake Thompson will take the ball for Heath as the Hawks attempt to continue their season.

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