ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. – Ryan Chipka (Waterville, OH/Anthony Wayne) recorded the first home run of his career and Alex Hacias (Sterling Heights, MI/Macomb CC) set the school record for hits in a single season, as the Warriors routed the visiting Barons from Ohio State Lima, 24 – 8.
Hacias entered the game just one hit away from inking his name in the RC record books. With friends and family watching, he singled to left in his first at bat, to earn the honor. Coach Ackerman presented the ball to Hacias' family.
"It felt good to get it out of the way first thing," said Hacias. "I've got a lot of memories on this field and with these guys. This one definitely makes it in the top three best moments of my baseball career."
After the record-setting play, the Warriors went on to tally three runs in the first. Strong defense in the top of the second kept the Barons off the scoreboard. Freshman Chaz Hill (Imlay City, MI/Lapeer East) advanced to first base after being hit by pitch, setting up Chipka's two-run shot.
On a 0-1 count, Chipka wailed the ball beyond the left fence, recording not only his first collegiate home run, but the first homer of his life.
"It's a feeling that can't be put into words," he said, after the game. "I've hit a lot of baseballs in my life and I've never put one over the fence. It felt incredible."
Two more runs in the inning put the home team up 7-0, but the visitors fought back in the third, scoring six times and bringing it to a one-run game.
Nothing could stop the Warriors, however, as they went on to collect seventeen runs over the next four innings. The impressive victory moved the team to .500 on the season with a record of 22-22.
The Warriors hit the road next week to take on Olivet College in a doubleheader on May 2.