It may not have seemed possible one month ago, but the Horizon Christian baseball team has overcome its rocky start to post six Big Sky Conference victories for the first time in the program’s brief history.
The Hawks (7-13, 6-5 Big Sky), who started the season 0-8, swept a doubleheader from second-place Condon last Friday by scores of 7-1 and 7-2, giving them six wins in seven games and an outside shot at the Class 1A state playoffs.
Pending Tuesday’s outcome at fourth-place Culver, Horizon would still have a chance to seize one of the two Big Sky playoff spots.
Results were not available at press time, but if Horizon could pull out another win and last-place Wahtonka could defeat Condon (also on Tuesday), the Hawks would be playoff bound.
“We’re pretty excited that we’ve been able to turn things around so much,” coach Jim Brown said. “There have been a lot of milestones set this year, and we’re looking forward to going for our seventh win in the past 12 games.”
Last Friday’s effort at Collins Field was indicative of the kind of play Brown has become accustomed to lately.
Sharp defense, spot-on pitching and timely hitting — which all evaded the Hawks in a May 13 home loss to first-place Sherman County — were all big factors in their sweep of Condon.
The Hawks tallied 14 hits on the day (six in game one; eight in game two), while giving up just five hits and three runs.
Sophomore Brian Stenberg was a force with his bat and his arm, socking two homeruns and five RBIs on offense, and pitching a complete game two-hitter to win game one.
Junior catcher Aaron Griffin also showed his power, hitting a two-run homerun in game two. Meanwhile, in game two, senior Sheldon Diers went 4-4 with three RBIs and tossed five innings of three-hit ball to pick up the win.
“This team has overcome so much in the past month, and it’s great to see it all come together for us here at the end,” Brown said.