CL Hawks Finish with Good Taste in Mouth, Win 6-1
Canyon Lake finished their year with a win and on a night of celebrating Senior Night, you can note that the word Senior is not plural.
Dylan Hodges finished his career for CL by turning a double play and knocking in the final run of a 4 run third inning that iced the game.
Finishing with a .545 on base percentage, the Hawks, were clicking on all cylinders as the game only had one hiccup by giving up one run in that first inning.
Gonzales was first ball hitting in that first frame and a first pitch strike was stroked for a triple and the Hawks found themselves like so many other games this year, fighting from behind.
“All we do is take ground balls in practice,” Austin Brooks said on talking about the double plays. “That helped us to calm down but Coach (Dunavant) also helped in that first inning.”
That was when Coach Dunavant made his stroll to the pitcher’s mound for a calming down talk.
A line-out double play to Brooks calmed the water on Canyon’s Lake and helped set the stage for a response that same inning when Gavin Dietrich singled and then a walk for Lee Stafford, which was the first of three base on balls, for the evening helping to get the rally going.
Enter Isaiah Daily hitting a one out single that drove in 2 runs that would stand for this rain shortened game.
The Hawks would threaten in their next inning with runners on second and third via walks but no damage as the Apache pitcher struck out the side.
For the top of that 2nd inning, Avery Montgomery walked his first batter but a fly out and a tailor made double play would be a pitchers best friend as the Hawks continue to play good defense.
That was the second double play of the game which would also stand as the most for a game this season.
Montgomery averaged 14 pitches per inning and the defense made routine plays which is what good teams do to get wins.
“It brings up your confidence level whenever I did that,” Montgomery said while commenting on changing his pitch placement after seeing that the Apaches were first ball hitting to start the game. “I just started locating my pitches different and moved more of them (pitches) to the outside.”
Stafford started the 3rd inning with his second walk but was rubbed out with a fielders choice off the bat of Brooks.
Daily would work a walk and Freshman Cade Dunavant had a perfect bunt single to load the bases with just one out.
“I have been working on it a lot this past Summer,” Dunavant commented. “The coaches had me working on it because I was not hitting the ball as good…the third baseman was playing back so I
was able to use the bunt as a weapon because you can catch the defense off guard with it.”
Well, that bunt worked to perfection for this game and then Dunavant would hit a rope to left center field for a double later in the game to show that his hitting had indeed improved.
“It was a two strike pitch and I just saw it coming in and put a good swing on it,” Dunavant said as if he was a coach.
On playing as a freshman, Dunavant commented on how he was able to excel with the best batting average for this season at .326, “I tried to play hard and I just went out and did not think about it and did not want to overthink it.”
CJ Parrish who had been in a slump then had a line drive *hit driving in one run and another Hawk scored on a throwing error on that same play.
*Note, that Parrish hit was a bloop single but when you look at the box score below just think a line drive hit with power.
The inning was not over as Montgomery laid down a suicide squeeze play next that got Dunavant home.
Hodges was up next and by staying alive while fouling off two strikes finally had a ball he could squeeze through 1st and 2nd base in getting Parrish home for that final run.
“We had been scrimmaging more often and that had been helping us out,” Senior Hodges contemplated. “I figured the pitcher would throw a fastball because he had used that on my first at bat and I just got enough of it to squeeze the ball right by his (second baseman’s) glove.”
Stafford was left stranded on 3rd base in the next inning but the clouds and lightening would finally end this last game of the season for a Hawk win.
As this season entered the later stages, Canyon Lake started to act and play like a team that seemed to be understanding more of those nuances that happen constantly on the field of dreams.
Case and point was seeing how Brooks took a ground ball and got the lead batter with a trick play.
“I fielded the ball and the hitter was jogging it,” Brooks remembered. “I sold it (throw to first) and the player on second was looking over to first to see if we were going to catch it….he bit on it and I just tagged him out. That builds our confidence up and shows what we can accomplish.”
The game was suspended in the bottom of the 5th inning and The ReSporter wanted to know what Senior Hodges wanted to have happen.
“I wanted the game to keep going,” Hodges said as if this was his last game. “But I can also say that my last at bat was a hit and that would not make me that upset.”
Not a lot of wins but seeing how the team played their last few games would give you a good taste in your mouth as errors were down while CL finally settled in, playing better and giving hope for what could be a good season next year.
As the team left the field with a good taste in their mouths with their win over Gonzales.
Last Box Score and Season Top 3 Stats
1 2 3 4 5 R H E Gonzales 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 1 CL Hawks 2 0 4 0 X 6 6 1 name ab r h bi 2b bb so misc Gavin Dietrich 3 1 1 0 0 0 1 sb Lee Stafford 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 sb 2 Austin Brooks 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 sb fc Isaiah Daily 2 1 1 2 0 1 1 Cade Dunavant 3 1 2 0 1 0 1 CJ Parrish 2 1 1 1 0 0 1 Avery Montgomery 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 sac Dylan Hodges 2 0 1 1 0 0 1 Hayden Reed 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 sb totals 16 6 6 5 1 6 6 pitching ip h r er bb so Avery Montgomery 5 2 1 0 4 2 pitches balls/strikes Montgomery 29/41 ============================================ Top Three at bats runs hits Gavin Dietrich 55 Gavin Dietrich 13 Rory Preiss 15 CJ Parrish 51 Hayden Reed 9 Austin Brooks 14 Hayden Reed 49 Cade Dunavant 6 Gavin Dietrich 14 Austin Brooks 6 runs batted in extra base hits base on balls Gavin Dietrich 10 Gavin Dietrich 4 Lee Stafford 10 Austin Brooks 5 CJ Parrish 3 Austin Brooks 9 CJ Parrish 5 Rory Preiss 3 Gavin Dietrich 9 Hayden Lee 9 batting ave on base pct. slugging pct Cade Dunavant .333 Gavin Dietrich .449 Cade Dunavant .400 Austin Brooks .304 Cade Dunavant .429 Gavin Dietrich .369 Gavin Dietrich .280 Lee Stafford .428 Austin Brooks .348 innings pitched strikeouts earned run ave Gavin Dietrich 44.0 Gavin Dietrich 27 Rory Preiss 4.14 Avery Montgomery 30.0 Avery Montgomery 17 Gavin Dietrich 4.29 Rory Preiss 15.2 Rory Preiss 11 Cade Dunavant 5.39