Vanessa Kuffner, Staff Writer
The Saints Baseball Team finally caught a win at the home opener against Northwest Nazarene University (NNU), after a 3-game losing streak. Unfortunately, after the win, they went on to lose the next two games.
For underclassmen athletes, it can be hard jumping from high school level play to collegiate athletics. The change in the level of play can become most evident in games, since practices don’t compare to the environment of an intense game. Dakota Hill, a freshman from Yelm, Wash., stated “[The season] has been rough, we have had a few challenges, but we have a lot of time left, a lot of time to reach our goals. Everything is still on the table for us, we just have to go out and get it.”
“Obviously, I’m the underclassman, so I’ve got to wait my time out, got to work hard and come in with a positive energy. But it is cool to go through getting the uniform and this is what I have wanted ever since I have been playing machine pitch. And then you go back and look at pictures and you are like ‘Wow, that kid is playing college baseball.’ It’s pretty cool, it is one of the dreams that’s coming true.” Hill has been playing baseball since he was five, and now he gets to live his childhood dream of playing baseball at the collegiate level.
The Saints came out strong against NNU, winning the game 4-1. A strong pitching performance by Clark Streby, and fantastic hits from Kahi Hirano and Austin Feist, fueled the win for the Saints. The Nighthawks scored their only run in the bottom of the sixth inning. In the fifth inning, Bryant Nakagawa walked and allowed junior transfer, Colton Peha, to score a run, making the lead to 2-0. To help cement the victory in the bottom of the sixth, Hirano landed a hit that allowed Ryne Oshiro to score all the way from second base. In the seventh inning, Feist hit his second home run and the Saints brought home the victory in the ninth inning.
It was a great way to start off the series. The next few games however, the Saints’ strong performances could not produce more wins. Mickey Walker had an impressive game pitching eight straight innings, and only allowing one run off five hits, one walk, and eight strikeouts. The game was cut short due to low lighting. When the game picked up again, NNU managed to pull out the win instead.
The season has only started for the Saint Martin’s Baseball Team, “Come to games, it is fun. We get our own walk up songs so you get to see everyone’s personality through the songs, which is kind of cool. Baseball it just such a unique environment, it is laid back and then also toward the end of the game it can get pretty intense and it’s a fun family environment,” encourages Hill. With plenty of home games left, support our baseball team and get them to GNAC tournament just like our men’s basketball team.