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BASEBALL: Bullpups shut down Hawks in first inning

The Hanford Bullpups score more runs in the first inning than Hawks score in seven

TULARE – Dominik Perez led the Bullpups to an 11-4 victory over the Hawks with two hits and three runs.

The Hanford Bullpups defeated the Mission Oak Hawks 11-4 after scoring five runs in the first inning of their game on Wednesday, May 3. Dominik Perez was the leading scorer for the Bullpups, but four different players had multiple hits. In total, seven different players recorded runs. On defense, pitcher Colton Oliviera allowed only seven hits over the six innings he pitched, striking out five batters and walking only one.

“We needed a bounce back from a tough loss [to Dinuba] on Monday,” Hanford head coach Carlos Perez said. “Mission Oak is a tough, tough team to play, especially at home. We scored five in the first inning that got the momentum rolling for us the rest of the game.”

Dominik kicked off the scoring for the Bullpups in the first, scoring the first run off of a huge double hit by Isaac Perez. Isaac, Justin Cerda, Derek Knight and Gavin Guzman recorded run after run for the Bullpups. The starting pitcher for the Hawks, Kannon Silva, was pulled after the fifth run and Nathan Martin came in for relief. But as the Bullpups kept scoring throughout the game, the Hawks kept going through pitchers.

“Not the best game, not our best outing,” Mission Oak head coach Kevin Break said. “We went through five pitchers today.”

Despite trying five different pitchers, none of them seemed to be able to shut down the Bullpups. Although none of the final six innings were as exciting as the first, the Bullpups kept scoring a run or two in nearly every inning, except the second and sixth. Leading the Bullpups, Dominik scored on every at bat, with two hits and one walk. The Perezes bat one after the other and anchor the Bullpups batting lineup. Isaac also had an impressive performance at the plate, batting in two runs and scoring two himself.

Pitching for the Bullpups, Oliviera held his own on the mound for six innings. Facing 28 batters, he allowed only four runs, fewer than the Bullpups scored in the first inning alone. He kept a sharp eye on the runners on base, quick to throw to first in order to prevent stolen bases. With a strong defense behind him, he threw 57 strikes and struck out five batters.

“He’s been pretty effective all year,” Carlos Perez said. “He started the season kind of rough but now he’s going five, six innings with minimal pitches. He’s a workhorse right now and we’re counting on him the rest of the season.”

The Bullpups lost to the Hawks 4-3 in their first meeting of the year on March 27. This huge win for them was necessary to stay in the third spot in the West Yosemite League. The Bullpups and the Hawks face each other again on May 5 at Hanford.

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