(London, Ontario) – On Saturday evening at Labatt Park, the Fanshawe Falcons Men's Baseball team (1-1) hosted the Humber Hawks (1-1) in the season opener. Fanshawe won an exciting first game 7-6 in extra innings, then dropped the second game 13-6.
In the first game of the doubleheader, the Hawks got on the board first, scoring one. The Falcons quickly responded with a double from rookie Ben Verhoeven (St. Thomas, ON) that scored teammate Catalin Morin (Amherstburg, ON). Josh Hare (St. Thomas, ON) then hit a two-run home run to give the Birds their first lead at 3-1.
Fanshawe completed a double play to hold Humber scoreless after the top of the third inning. In the bottom of the third, Braden Halford (Port Hope, ON) hit a double, sending Judd Walker (Mitchell, ON) home. The Falcons added another run to go up 5-1 on the Hawks. Humber, the reigning national champions, would come back strong, scoring three runs in the sixth and one in the seventh to tie the score and force extra innings. The Hawks scored a run in the top of the eighth to take the lead. In the bottom of the inning, Fanshawe tried to answer with Brandon Jones (Mississauga, ON) laying down a perfect sacrifice bunt to advance Falcons runners to second and third. Down to their final out, Morin came up big at the plate, driving a single between first and second to give the Falcons a 7-6 extra inning walk off win. First year pitcher Joe Blakely (Belleville, ON) (1-0) notched the win, while Humber's Riley Pollard took the loss (0-1).
In a battle of the birds, the teams exchanged runs in the first four innings. The Falcons had RBIs from Jake Julian (Niagara Falls, ON), Derek Smith (Wyoming, ON) and Morin. With the game tied at four, Humber stepped up their game, scoring three runs in the top of the fifth inning. Julian notched another RBI in the bottom of the fifth to make the score 7-5 for the visitors. The Hawks had a big sixth inning, adding five runs to extend their lead to 12-5 and eventually winning 13-6. Noah Campagnolo (Guelph, ON) (0-1) took the loss, while Humber's Steve Hough (1-0) recorded the victory. Hare was 3 for 4 at the plate on the day with 2 RBIs, 2 runs and a walk.
Fanshawe will look to pick up a pair of wins next Saturday, September 14 when they travel to Toronto to face the George Brown Huskies (0-0) at 1pm and 3pm.