Here we go again…wait, we WON!!!
Calling sporting events since 1994, I have seen my fair share of wacky endings – such as the 1994 state basketball quarterfinals in Washington where my alma mater, Rogers High, gave up a seven point lead with 19 seconds left to lose, or the 1999 football game between Pacific Lutheran and Willamette, where PLU scored three touchdowns in the final three minutes to erase a 24-7 deficit en route to the NCAA Division III national title, even the 13-1 lead the Hawks had in 2005 at Eugene, eventually losing 14-13.
I thought I saw it all last Thursday, when Boise squandered a three-run lead in the ninth at Tri-City. So tonight, with a five-run lead – I thought all bets were off…was I wrong. Corey Martin and Danny Keefe struggled, as did Hak-Ju Lee, as five runs scored in the ninth, then Emmanuel Quiles crushed a homer in the tenth to give Eugene the lead.
But – there was a little fight left in the Hawks. Hustle plays by Jae-Hoon Ha, first stealing second, then beating a throw to third on a grounder helped put runners at the corners with one down. George Matheus, who had the Hawks first four-hit game of the year, singled home Ha, with Matt Williams, who hustled from first-to-third on the single, scoring as the throw from the outfield sailed wide (Listen to the walk-off winner
walkoff2.wma). Four wins this season, four one-run wins.
Maybe a six-run lead next time will avert the drama?
THE BACON: Ha extended his hitting streak to six games with a two-hit night, while Williams picked up his first two RBI in a Hawks uniform…Brett Jackson singled in a first inning run for his first Boise RBI…Dionis Nunez continued to be stellar in the pen, tossing two scoreless innings, retiring six of seven batters, while Yohan Gonzalez continued to roll against anyone but Tri-City, throwing three shutout frames…the five-run margin the Hawks held at 7-2 was the largest lead of the season for Boise…the squad is now 2-0 in extra inning games and 4-1 in one-run games, while 0-11 in all other contests…after going 20 innings without a runner to third or scoring, the first three Hawks reached base tonight, ending the streak with a bang.
NOTES: Former Hawk Ricky Nolasco struck out 12 batters today in eight innings, helping Florida to a 5-0 win over Pittsburgh, his fourth-straight win…another former Hawk, Francisco Rodriguez of the Mets was selected to the National League All-Star Team…2008 Hawk Casey Coleman pitched eight innings of shutout ball, improving to 9-3, leading Tennessee to a 7-0 Southern League victory over Carolina.