Austin Hogan’s solo homer in the first inning gave the Paradise Panthers a 1-0 lead Friday.
Unfortunately, it was the Panthers’ final run of the game and the season as they lost 7-1 to the Sunnyvale Raiders at Ponder High School.
Paradise managed only four more hits against Sunnyvale hurler Nathan Hawkins, who struck out nine in seven innings.
“He was good. He kept us off balance with a good off-speed pitch and curveball,” said Paradise coach Mike Fehler. “We hit a lot of ground balls at them.”
The loss ended the Panthers’ season at 22-8-1.
“I feel good about the season,” Fehler said. “We’ve got a good set of kids coming back, and they will know what to expect next year. Hopefully we can make a good run next year.”
The Panthers do lose four seniors – Jarret Holt, Tanner Valentine, Corbin Holt and Kristoff Pewitt.
Holt drew the start against Sunnyvale and allowed five runs – four earned – on seven hits. He struck out five and walked four.
Caiden Berry pitched two-thirds of an inning in relief, giving up two runs on a hit and two walks. Hogan turned in a scoreless inning.
Paradise’s 1-0 lead held up until the third when Sunnyvale scored three. Lawson Ayo led off the third with a double and came around to score on Ryan Cottingame’s single. Wesley Phillips and Sam Shaver added run-scoring hits in the frame.
Sunnyvale piled on four runs in the sixth. After Paradise pitchers walked the bases loaded, Ayo cleared them with a three-run triple. He scored on Cottingame’s sacrifice.
Ayo finished 3-for-4 with three RBIs.