The HoCo Bear’s 2023 Varsity Baseball season started off with a bang as the black & silver gashed the preseason ranked #3 team in AAAAAAA Lowndes Vikings 14-2 in five innings at the Bear’s Diamond. Lowndes was able to get two quick outs in the bottom of the 1st but then surrendered four consecutive walks that would lead to the Bears scoring their first run of 2023. Starting pitcher Ryker Chavis had a 2 rbi single in the bottom of the first to extend the Bears lead to 3-0 in the first.
Sophomore Vick Gann also added a 2 rbi single in the bottom of the first to push the lead to 5-0 HoCo after one. HoCo’s offense had an explosive 7-run 2nd to lead 12-0 after two & almost ended the game in three innings but fell one run shy of doing so with a 14-0 lead after three innings of play.
Coach Hopkins pulled most of his starters on offense & defense to allow the younger players to get some valuable playing time going into the top half of the fourth which is where the Bears got a little sloppy & surrendered two Vikings runs after three 1/2.
There would not be much offense the rest of the night as HoCo went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the fourth & relief pitcher Landon Tankersley came in & was able to close out the game by allowing no runs to make the final score 14-2. Starting pitcher Ryker Chavis pitched a gem by allowing no runs on just one hit through three innings of work.
Vick Gann led the team with 3 rbis on the night & senior Drew Burress almost hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second that fell just short that resulted in a double deep to center. HoCo opened the season at 1-0 overall while the Vikings fell to 1-1 overall.
Prior to the first pitch; a special ceremony was held for Baltimore Orioles & former Bears pitcher DL Hall as his #3 jersey was retired earlier this evening. Hall was a part of the 2016 State Champion Bears team & was drafted 21st overall in Round 1 of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Baltimore Orioles & made his major league debut debut on August 13th of last year.