The wet weather forced the postponement of games across northern Nevada, but it didn't save Hug any embarrassment as the Railroaders outclassed the Hawks by posting wins of 16-1 and 11-0.
“We are limiting our mistakes and taking advantage of what other teams are giving us,” Sparks coach Greg Vasko said. “The kids want to get to the next level. They know we missed the playoffs last season and they don't want that to happen again. What I like is they're humble, because we've been on the other side.”
Sparks pitchers Tyler Dresbach and Brandon Harris combined to give up just one hit in the two five-inning, mercy-rule affairs.
Dresbach struck out five and did not issue a walk, picking up the pitching win in Game 1 for Sparks. Hug's only run was unearned. Richard Kerr had the lone Hawks hit on the day.
Brandon Harris tossed a five-inning no-hitter in Game 2. He struck out five, walked three and hit one. A pair of Hawks reached third base in the contest but neither was able to cross the plate safely.
“Tyler and Brandon were hitting their locations and mixing up their pitches well,” Vasko said. “I call the pitches, but they have to make the pitches. They're showing a lot of confidence on the mound too. I think whether we're up or down, our pitchers are staying focused. That's a difference from last year to this year.”
In the opener, Sparks put up plenty of offense but much of it was gift wrapped from Hug. The Railroaders pushed across their 16 runs on just five hits. Hug hurlers allowed 13 walks in the lopsided game.
Sparks sent 11 hitters to the plate in the first inning of Game 1 and scored seven runs despite getting just one hit in the rally, an RBI single by Leonel Abundis. The Railroaders got six walks and Hug committed two errors in the inning.
"We had to be disciplined," Vasko said. "You can't swing at that stuff way above your hands."
Sparks tacked on two runs in the second and seven more in the third. Abundis bashed a three-run homer to highlight the Railroaders' third inning.
Abundis had two hits for Sparks in Game 1 while Kody McClelland, Keiffer Putman and Dennis Morelli each had a hit.
Sparks earned a little more of its offensive punch in Game 2, finishing with nine hits in its 11-0 triumph.
The SHS crew quickly grabbed the lead, pushing across four runs in the bottom of the first inning. Abundis singled, Harris walked and Morelli ripped a two-run triple. Next, Joe Christ reached on an error that allowed Morelli to score. Christ came around to score shortly thereafter.
In the second, Abundis tripled and came plateward when Harris reached on an error. Morelli proceed to drill a two-run dinger, forging Sparks ahead 7-0.
The Railroaders kept pouring it on. They added three more runs in the third and and a single score in the fourth to account for the final 11-0 tally.
"Our guys are working hard in practice. They don't let up," Vasko said. "The kids are playing well. Our seniors are doing their job and leading us. They want to succeed."
Sparks improved to 13-5 overall with Saturday's non-conference victories. The Railroaders have now won seven straight games. Their last loss was April 1 at Fallon. Sparks is in action again Wednesday when it hosts Truckee for a Mount Rose League game at 4 p.m.