Hawks Cast Out Ghosts of 2017 with State Title Win Over Blanco
ROUND ROCK, TX -- Two years ago, the Wall Hawks suffered one of their least memorable losses in program history -- a 10-0 loss in five innings to Nacogdoches Central Heights in the state championship at Dell Diamond.
It stung, but also motivated the Hawks to get back to right that wrong.
Wall returned to the scene of the crime on Saturday and finally ended what turned out to be a two-year process with a 2-1 win over Blanco.
“I couldn’t get to the mound fast enough. It felt like I was running in slow motion,” head coach Jason Schniers said of his celebration.
The process was a year longer than the Hawks wanted, but it didn’t soften the fact that they finally got what they had worked for.
“It means everything to us,” senior Ryan Gully said. “Before the last inning, we all got on the mound and everybody said this is what we’ve dreamed of since we first put on the green and white when we were seven years old. … We’re extremely excited.”
WATCH: Wall Fans Celebrate Win
Wall broke the scoreless tie in the bottom of the sixth on a sac fly from Caleb Heuertz. Senior right fielder Gage Weishuhn would follow that with an RBI single to make it 2-0 Wall.
“(Zac Wisdom), he’s a very well-rounded pitcher, he didn’t miss his spots,” Gully said. “We just knew we had to find a way to scratch away one or two runs.”
Luke Young got the start and delivered a masterpiece for the Hawks to finish the year 11-1. Young allowed one run on three hits to pick up the win.
For his efforts, Young was named the Championship Game MVP. The junior didn’t even think he was in the running for the honor.
“I didn’t know what they said, so I just started clapping. Then they told me I got it and I was just really shocked and amazed,” Young said.
Eventually, Blanco finally got to Young after the junior righty had already faced two batters in the seventh and walked each of them. He would later be charged for the run that came home on a sac fly for the Panthers.
That meant Schniers had to turn to someone to close out the game with Young nearing the pitch limit. So, after throwing a stellar four innings of relief to pick up the win on Friday, Gully entered the game and shut the door on Blanco by throwing one inning of hitless relief..
Gully’s last pitch as a Hawk turned into his 26th career strikeout at Dell Diamond in Round Rock. After missing all of 2018 with an elbow injury, it was well worth the wait.
“He had a rough go last year, having to sit and watch his teammates take the field every game we played,” Schniers said.
While Gully turned into a cheerleader to help however he could, he still wanted to come back.
“I could tell that ate at him for a full year and he worked so hard this offseason to make sure he was back on the field this season. What a way to finish it out,” Schniers added.
The Hawks outhit Blanco 5-3 in the defensive game. Gully led that charge as the only Hawk with multiple hits at 2-for-3 with the eventual winning run credited to his feet.
Gage Weishuhn and Charlie Mascorro each went 1-for-3 at the plate. Colton Diebitsch was 1-for-2 with a run scored for the Hawks.
Wall finishes with a program-best record of 39-1. They graduate eight seniors.
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