Staying in the present helps Hawks fly by CGD in district opener

STORY CITY – Let’s play one more game.

It sounds simple enough, and for the time being it’s all the players on the South Hamilton baseball team are thinking about.

The mantra worked Saturday night, as the Hawks opened up Class 2A District 13 play with a mild upset over Clarion-Goldfield-Dows, 8-4, in a quarterfinal-round clash.

“Playing one more game, that’s the attitude we’re taking right now,” South Hamilton head coach Kyle Galetich said after his squad extended its season and ended a six-game losing streak. “The benefit of playing teams like Gilbert and Greene County and all of the other 3A schools (during the regular season) is it gave us confidence. Playing tough competition helped.”

South Hamilton (5-18) out hit CGD (9-15) 9-5; the Hawks were bolstered by a complete-game effort from pitcher Trey Woodall, who really made just two mistakes while striking out five against just one walk.

“Trey pitched very well. He kept them off-balance because his off-speed pitch was very good,” Galetich said. “Walking only one kid was a big thing. He had his control and when he has that he’s confident.”

Three of the Cowboys’ runs came on two swings – a first-inning two-run home run by Trenton Sann and a seventh-inning solo blast by Jacob Harvey.

The contest was locked at 3 after five innings. South Hamilton erupted for five runs in the sixth to seize control for good.

A two-RBI single by Dugan Swenson helped to spark the Hawks’ onslaught. CGD didn’t do itself any favors with two errors in the frame.

Colton Griffin had a big night at the plate, as he went 3-for-4 with two doubles and two runs scored. Blake Barquist was 2-for-3 and touched the dish twice, and Hunter Griffin added a single and a team-high three RBI.

Caleb Olson and Jake Hand also singled.

South Hamilton will face another North Central Conference opponent in the semifinal round on Tuesday when it battles Hampton-Dumont (20-10) back in Story City at 5 p.m. West Marshall and Roland-Story will meet in the second semifinal approximately 30 minutes after the first game.