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Hawks stay hot, win streak hits eight

The Hastings Hawks went 2-0-1 in their last three games this past week. The Hawks played Lyon's Pub Warriors and, in what proved to be a thrilling game, the Hawks and Warriors would tie with a final score 6-6.

The 5-1 Warriors jumped out to an early 2-0 lead after the second inning, but Hastings was able to tie the game with a two-run effort in the fourth. The lead would not last long, though, and the Hawks found themselves down 6-2 as they entered the ninth inning. The Hawks were able to rally back as they scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth. Hastings had the winning run on third base with only one out, but the next batter hit into a double play, which sent the game into extra innings. The game would be called a 6-6 tie as poor weather forced the umpire to call the game after the tenth inning.

The offensive comeback performance was led by Drew Benson, who had three hits in five at-bats, including two doubles. Jordan Jeske had two hits in five appearances, including a double and two RBIs.

Next, Hastings would play host to the Randolph Railcats. Taylor Beattie was on the mound for the Hawks, and he did not disappoint. Beattie allowed only one run in seven innings of action, and he struck out seven batters as the Hawks won the game 5-3. Beattie improved to 3-0 on the season with his impressive performance. Beattie allowed his only run of the game early in the first inning, and the Hawks were not able to pull away from the Railcats until a three-run effort in the seventh.

"We started out sluggish, and did not play our best game by any means," manager Deryk Marks said. "We held on, though, for our first league win."

Jeske, Drew Flack and Diedrich provided the spark Hastings needed offensively as they each had two hits apiece. Jeske also added a two-run double.

The Hawks faced the Elko Express next, and this game was a big one on the team's schedule.

"This was a very important game for us," Marks said. "We were 0-2 going into the game in section play, which determines our eventual playoff seeding."

The Hawks came out hot and got to Elko's starting pitcher early, as they put up four runs in the second inning. The Hawks were then able to add one more run to their lead in the fourth inning, and they kept the Express off the scoreboard until the sixth inning when they scored just one run.

"It is always nice to jump out to the lead when playing in important games," Marks said.

The Hawks offense caught fire again in the eighth, as they were able to drive in five more runs, which extended their lead, and ultimately put Elko away. The final score was 10-2, and the Hastings Hawks picked up their first section win.

Marks stepped up on the mound for the Hawks as he pitched a complete game and only gave up five hits while striking out eight. He even had a perfect game going until the sixth inning until giving up a leadoff double. Marks also was productive at the plate recording three hits on five at-bats with two doubles and a game-high four RBI's. Jeske continued his hot streak at the plate, driving in three more runs. Andy Sammon was also able to collect three hits.

The Hawks now have a record of 8-2-1, and Marks is very excited about how his team is now playing some of its best baseball.

"We believe if we can show up, and swing the bats well, then we can play with anyone," Marks said. "If we can get on a streak, and make a run to the top of the section standings then that would be crucial for playoffs."