Heath Hawks smash Cleburne 10-1, win 4-A State Baseball Championship
ROUND ROCK – The Heath Hawks are the new Texas State Class 4-A Baseball Champions after smashing Cleburne, 10-1, tonight behind the four-hit pitching and three RBIs by Player-of-the-Game, Jovan Hernandez.
The All-American pitcher and catcher hit a two-run homer over the left field fence in the third inning and drove in a run with a single in the sixth inning, scoring twice himself.
It was Hernandez near the pitcher’s mound that all the Hawks piled on to celebrate their victory, after the Hawks turned a game-ending double play.
Timbo Duncan had three singles, scored twice and drove in two runs. Grayson Lewis and Russell Hughes each picked up two RBIs for Heath. Clayton Rasbeary had two doubles and scored twice. Jake Bledsoe had two singles and drove home one run.
Complete statistics are not yet available.
Cleburne scored their only run in the top of the second inning on a single, stolen base, sacrifice and single.
Heath came right back and tied the score in the bottom of the inning when Duncan singled home R.J. Williams from second base, after Williams had stolen second. Catcher Bledsoe had singled and Williams was called upon as a courtesy runner.
In the third inning, the Hawks took a 3-1 lead on Hernandez two-run shot, after Rasbeary doubled, and they never looked back.
Cleburne went through three pitchers and still couldn’t stop Heath’s hitting.
The Hawks scored twice more in the fourth, and led 5-1, after Hughes hit a two-run double down the left field line, scoring Duncan & Lewis, who had each singled.
In the fifth inning, the Hawks took a 7-1 lead, scoring twice more on a bases-loaded single by Lewis with two out. Duncan, who had walked, and Williams, who was running again for Bledsoe after he singled again, scored.
On the mound, Hernandez had settled into a groove and was looking very sharp. He retired Cleburne three up and three down in the fifth and sixth innings.
The Hawks turned the game into a rout in the sixth inning, increasing the score to 10-1. They were so dominant that game was nearly called after six because of the mercy rule. The Hawks were just one more run away from it.
Rasbeary doubled for the second time and scored on Hernandez’ single. After Jovan scored, Garrett Manuel scored the Hawks’ final run on Duncan’s RBI single.
In the top of the seventh, Cleburne managed to get one runner on base from an error, and another on a fielder’s choice, but the double-play ended any hopes for a rally and the game and 2012 season came to an end.
A celebration parade is expected to be organized soon for the Hawks. TheRockwallNews.com sent emails to RISD, athletic directors, Booster Club leaders and the Cities of Heath and Rockwall today offering to help organize and publicize it.
Heath Mayor Lorne Liechty told the Rockwall Co. Republican Men’s Club this morning that the Hawks will be leading the Heath 4th of July Parade, July 4 at 9 am.
Congratulations to the Heath Hawks – 2012 State 4-A Baseball Champions!
By J.J. Smith, Publisher