EL CAJON, Calif. – Through eight innings, the Hawks held a slight 2-1 advantage in the home opener against the Mustangs. But The Master's College scored three runs in the top of the ninth to defeat SDC 4-2 Friday to hand the Hawks their first loss on the season.
Mustang's first baseman Josh Brown hit a 2 RBI single to right field. Hawk right fielder peter Hoyt delivered a strike to home plate but the ball got away from catcher Jacob Rogers. After Rogers retrieved the ball from the backstop, Tyler Krahn was rounding third and coming home. Krahn avoided the tag with a shifty move and was the eventual game-winning run. The Mustangs later scored from an errant pickoff attempt for the extra run support.
With the loss, SDC falls to 7-1 and 3-1 in GSAC play. The Master's College improves to 9-0 and 4-0 in conference.
Mark Vasquez pitched a complete game in the loss. In the nine innings, he allowed eight hits, four runs allowed (three earned), walking two while striking out six in 116 pitches.
In the top of the third, Jonathan Popadics hit a deep fly ball the right-center field. Cade Gotta was able to track down the shot and caught the ball before crashing into the fence, temporarily disabling a piece of center field. The umpires originally called it a homerun but after minutes of consideration, Popadics was called out.
A half inning later, the Hawks were the first to crack the scoreboard. Richard Aguirre led off with an infield single followed by a bunt single from Gotta. Taylor Eichhorst came up two batters later and struck an RBI single to left field plating Aguirre for the 1-0 lead.
The lead was short lived as Ryan Shackleford came up with one out and delivered a shot to right center that cleared the fences for his first homer of the season to tie it at one apiece.
The Hawks retook the lead in the bottom of the sixth. Jeff Lusardi started it off with a single through the right side of the infield. Two batters later, Rogers hit his third single of the game and scored Lusardi from second base for a 2-1 lead before The Master's College scored the three runs in the ninth.
Jason Karkenny came in relief for Mustangs starter Tommy Kister and earned the win after pitching two hitless innings for his second win of the season.
Rogers finished the day going 3-for-4 with an RBI. Gotta went 2-for-3 and Eichhorst finished at 1-for-4 with the other RBI.
Both teams square off again tomorrow for a double-header to finish the 3-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 11 a.m.