The McLennan Highlanders opened a three-game series with the Howard Hawks this afternoon with a 13-5 victory. Bailey Horn picked up the win on the mound of the Highlanders.
Howard began the scoring with one run in the top of the first. Trey Ochoa drew a lead-off walk and moved to second on a ground out by Caleb Kyle. A McLennan error brought Ochoa in to score.
McLennan took the lead with three runs in the bottom of the second. Griffin Williams drew a lead-off walk, Mario Vela singled and George Callil walked to load the bases. Chris Roller followed with a single to score Williams and Vela. Callil then scored on a sacrifice fly by Joe Breaux.
The Highlanders added four runs in the third. Nic Motley singled and stole second. Chase Sortor and Williams both singled bringing Motley in to score. Sortor scored on a Howard error. Callil then doubled to score Williams and Roller singled to score Callil.
The Hawks final four runs came in the top of the fourth. Andrew Beck led off with a triple and Jonathan Arrieta was hit by the pith. Colacecchi singled to score Beck. Robert Bullard and Reese O'Farrell both singled bringing Arrieta in to score. Ochoa then singled to score Colarecchi and Bullard.
McLennan added two runs in the fifth. Callil singled, Roller walked and Josh Breaux was hit by the pitch to load the bases. Griffin Paxton drew a walk brining Callil in to score and Roller scored on a wild pitch.
Another two Highlander runs scored in the sixth as Vela doubled and scored on Callil's home run.
McLennan rounded out the scoring with two runs in the seventh as Paxton walked and Motley followed with a home run.
"I liked a lot of what I saw today," head coach Mitch Thompson said. "It was good to get Horn back out there today as a starter and he gave us five plus innings of real competitive baseball. He probably could have gone a little deeper into the game but we are trying to take care of his arm and make sure we are good with him pitch-count wise. He was in the zone and his attack of the zone was good, and he gave us us a really nice outing. Then, Kyrell Miller did a nice job coming out of the bullpen. It was good to see him do that because we are obviously going to need him to be a force for us out of our bullpen."
"The bottom of our order was outstanding today: Callil, Vela, Williams and Cole Haring. Between the three of them, the seven-, eight- and nine-hole hitters scored eight runs, and gave us six hits and a couple walks. They were on base all day for the top half of our order which was outstanding. Callil, our Aussie from Melbourne, Australia, was outstanding and had a 3-3 day with a home run and two walks, and was involved in two double plays. It was a great day for Callil and that was fun to see."
"We've got room to work; we've got room to improve. We misplayed some balls in the outfield today with the sun, the wind and the high sky so we've got some things to keep getting better at but we can do that. We will start off on that again tomorrow. This Howard team is a good team and tomorrow we play a doubleheader against them. We will get after it with Logan Freeman and Nick Urbantke on the mound."