Seattle University’s baseball team opened up the 2017 season this past weekend, splitting a four game series against Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.
PHOTO VIA SEATTLE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS, RICK MAY
Max Modeste swings for the fences in game one of a double header.
The Redhawks (2-2) started off strong with a doubleheader on opening day, winning both games. Junior Janson Junk got the start in the first game, leading the team to a 4-1 win over the Cougars (2-2). Junk would finish the game having pitched six innings and striking out seven batter, while giving up one run.
“I think it was a good performance to start off the year,” Junk said. “There’s always areas to improve on but it was a good way to kick off the season. It’s nice to pitch Friday after pitching Sundays, when you need to wait all weekend.”
Sophomore Jake Prizina started the second game for the Redhawks, picking up the 9-3 win and giving up three runs in five innings. The offense picked up in the second game, led by sophomore left fielder Max Modeste. Modeste had a great day overall, hitting two home runs and driving in five runs between the two games. This included a blast to right field in his first at bat of the season.
“I got a little in the groove. I got a good pitch to hit and put a good swing on it, that’s what I was look for,” Modeste said.
Head Coach Donny Harrel was pleased with how his team performed. “We weren’t as nervous as I thought we might be, but (SIUE) wasn’t either,” Harrel said. “I thought that first game was some quality baseball, and it was a really good start. The aggression carried over into game two and our offense was able to stack up enough runs to win.”
Unfortunately, the Redhawks weren’t able to build on those wins, dropping the next two games. They lost Saturday’s game 6-0, after the Cougars hit a grand slam in the ninth inning to put the game out of reach. Reigning Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year Nick Meservey took the mound in the third game of the series. He pitched four scoreless innings, striking out five batters and giving up just one hit. He left the team in good shape, but Zach Wolf gave up a run the next inning to put the Redhawks down 1-0. The offense never got going and they dropped game two.
The final game of the series ended up being an offensive showdown, with SIUE winning 13-10. The Redhawks struck first in the first inning, but quickly relinquished the lead and played catch up most of the game. They finally went back on top in the bottom of the eighth inning, but let up another ninth inning grand slam and couldn’t find a way to answer in the bottom of the frame.
“We didn’t get out of the blocks good,” Harrel said. “The offense did a good job of getting back into it. That was way too many home runs in a pitchers park. We have to be better.” The Redhawks travel to Minnesota this upcoming weekend to play the Gophers in a three-game series.
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