'Hawks take league title to state - The Explorer: Sports

'Hawks take league title to state

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Posted: Tuesday, May 4, 2010 11:00 pm | Updated: 8:08 am, Thu Mar 24, 2011.

Maybe it was a good thing Ironwood Ridge baseball coach Jason Hisey didn't throw pitching aces Brandon Matthews and Kyle Petty against Sunnyside in a playoff tuneup for both teams last Tuesday.

The two teams squared off again in their 5A-II first-round playoff opener at Ironwood Ridge Saturday, when the Nighthawks (19-9, 11-1 in conference) prevailed 11-10 in eight innings. Ironwood Ridge was slated to play Tempe Marcos de Niza at 4 p.m. Tuesday in Surprise.

Freshman Trey Stine hit the tie-breaking single to give the Nighthawks the dramatic win in their last at-bat Saturday.

"We had a lot of clutch hitting," said assistant coach Nathan Orelup.

Matthews belted two home runs, extending a monstrous season. The junior has batted .432 with five homers and 29 runs batted in. Zach Sweety, Clay Matthews and Daniel Medina each added doubles for the Nighthawks.

Matthews pitched the first five innings Saturday. After surrendering three runs in the first, Matthews threw shutout ball for the next three innings, until tiring in the fifth and giving up two.

The Nighthawks scored two runs in the first and three more in the third.

Petty relieved Matthews in the sixth with the Nighthawks holding the lead, 8-5. The Blue Devils rallied for two in the sixth and two in the top of the seventh for a brief 9-8 lead.

"We've had better pitching," Orelup said. "But we had just two errors."

The Nighthawks rallied to tie it in the bottom of the seventh. Then, after the Blue Devils put another run on the board in the top of the eighth, the Nighthawks won it with two in the bottom half.

The Nighthawks had already won their first regional championship before losing last Tuesday to Sunnyside, 22-10, in a five-inning game. It was Ironwood Ridge's lone conference loss.

The blowout loss had to be taken with a grain of salt, because Hisey deliberately held out Matthews and Petty.

"We had wrapped up a playoff spot," Hisey said. "We rested some regulars."

Using five other pitchers, none of whom pitched more than an inning each, the Nighthawks walked 12 batters. Sunnyside scored four runs without a hit on seven straight walks in the second inning.

Offensively, the Nighthawks held their own, as they matched Sunnyside's 15 hits and hit three home runs. Sweety, Steven Still and Alex Worden all homered.

"Offensively, we had a good game," Sweety said. "Ten runs in five innings should win."

"We never hit three home runs in a game," said Still, who singled, doubled, and homered.

The Nighthawks ended the regular season with a 22-5 win over Rincon. Sweety hit two homers, a double and a triple in the game. He finished up with a .441 batting average and 33 runs batted in.

Worden also reached .400 with a .408 average, 24 runs batted in, and a team-leading 37 runs scored.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)


Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions


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