Hawks look to bypass region preliminary tournament with final season win

By Bruce Karnick

[email protected]

The Class C Hastings Hawks have had a solid season for 2022, previously beating the Miesville Mudhens twice and having key victories over other Class B teams in the Classic Cannon Valley League. At 1412 overall, 76 in the CCVL and 32 in Class C of the CCVL, the Hawks are currently in second place in the league with one more game to go. That game is against the Cannon Fall Bears in Cannon Falls on July 22 at 7:30 p.m. The Bears are 510 in the CCVL and 32 in Class C of the CCVL games. At 32, both teams are tied, but the Hawks hold the tiebreaker currently over the Bears. The tiebreaker is headtohead record. The Hawks won the only game they have played against each other.

Hastings had three games this last week, first travelling to River Falls to take on the Fighting Fish Wednesday. That game was close for most of the game with the Fighting Fish leading 21 until they scored five in the late innings to win 71.

Prepandemic, Hastings had always hosted the River Rumble, a park doubleheader where the Hastings Legion team would play the Prescott Legion team at 5 p.m., then the Hawks played the Prescott Pirates after. This year’s legion teams were not available, but the Pirates were so the River Rumble was back on for the Friday of Rivertown Days.

Hastings jumped out to an early 30 lead in the bottom of the first and never looked back. With one out, Cory Wolters walked, then moved to second on a wild pitch. Isaac Flynn hit a single up the middle, moving Wolters to third. Jake Sandquist was walked loading the bases. Cole Benson singled to right scoring Wolters for the first run. Jackson Tessman hit a hard ground ball to short who flipped it to second to get Benson on the fielder’s choice for out number two. In that sequence, Flynn scored, and Sandquist moved to third. Tessman’s grounder to short was the perfect doubleplay ball for Prescott, but Tessman’s speed beat the throw. Even though Tessman beat the throw, a throwing error on the second baseman allowed Sandquist to score.

Prescott logged one in the top of the third and Hastings answered right back. Wolters was at the plate leading off the bottom of the third when he drove the fourth pitch he saw 360 feet to left center for a solo homer.

Hastings added one in the bottom of the fourth, an RBI walk for Flynn with the bases loaded, then one more in the bottom of the sixth when Benson hit a double to right, scoring Sandquist. Hastings won the River Rumble 61.

Jordan Jeske earned the win with six strikeouts, three walks and one earned run in five innings pitched. Tommy Ritt logged the save with four innings pitched, allowing two hits and striking out five.

Offensively, Benson led the way going 45 with two runs batted in and a double, earning him the player of the game. Ben Teigland and Flynn both went 2for3 at the plate.

Saturday, StewartvilleRacine came to town for an evening game. The Sharks are in the same region as the Hawks, Region 5C and they are currently the number one seed for the region tournament because they are undefeated in their league play.

The Sharks took the 10 lead in the first and after that, it was all Hawks. Hastings scored on in the second off the bat of Evan Krhin who drove in Tessman.

Jake Biermaier led off the third with a grounder to second that was misplayed for an error. Wolters moved him to second with a sacrifice fly then Flynn drove in the run with a single to right and the Hawks had the lead 21.

In the fifth, the Hawks went through the entire order scoring five to extend their lead 71. Wolters, Flynn, Sandquist, Tessman and Jeske all scored. Tessman had one RBI and both Jeske and Teigland had two. 71 ended up being the final for the game.

Max Bundschu pitched a great game going eight innings, striking out one and allowing three hits. Brenden Kruger closed the game out allowing only one hit.

The upcoming game against Cannon falls determines if the Hawks get to skip the preliminary tournament of the Region 5C playoffs.

Cole Benson earned the player of the game against Prescott for his 4-for-5 performance at the plate which included a double and two RBI’s. He was also great in the field making numerous scoops at first base for key outs. Photo by Mike Bremer.

July 20, 2022