Using the same recipe for success since Day 1, the Tahoe Twins rode clutch pitching and hitting to a 4-2 win over the Reno Hornets to capture the Reno/Tahoe NABA Championship this past Sunday.
Twins starting pitcher Jesse Hildebrandt had been lights out all season, and the big right-hander did not disappoint in the biggest game of the year.
After allowing two runs in the first inning, he posted goose eggs the rest of the way, needing only 93 pitches to get through nine innings. He scattered 10 hits and recorded three strikeouts, and finished the year with a minuscule ERA of 0.80 to go along with his nine wins. The Twins staff as a whole posted an ERA of 1.01 on the season.
The Hornets pitched a fine game as well, holding the potent Twins lineup off the scoreboard until they scratched across a run in the bottom of the fourth inning.
In the sixth inning, however, cleanup-hitting first baseman Jesse Brown picked up Hildebrandt with the most crucial hit of the game. The always-dangerous hitter blasted a go-ahead, two-run home run to put the Twins on top, 3-2. The bomb gave Brown 100 RBIs in his time with the Twins.
Scott Decker then drove in an insurance run in the seventh inning on infield single before Hildebrandt closed it out.
The Twins managed just six hits in the game. Decker had two, while Drew Lipnosky, Steve Derby, Brown and Bobby Habeger each had one. Jamy Habeger drove in the Twins’ first run.
On the season, the Twins posted a collective team batting average of .343, led by Cory Munoz’s smoking .480 average. Brown finished at .478, while Decker hit . 424, Joe Thomas .377, Derby .373 and Lipnosky .370.
The Twins posted a final record of 19-2.