Hawks walk off Field of Dreams with memories and a win

Central Lee knocks off Pekin in game played at historic movie site.


DYERSVILLE — It’s one thing to see the baseball field in a movie.
It’s another thing to step on its pitching mound and deliver your own masterful performance, or step up to its home plate and smack a baseball into the corn.
Central Lee wrote its own script on Monday with a 12-2 win over Pekin at the Field of Dreams, five innings and 90 minutes that the Hawks won’t forget.
“I mean, it was awesome,” said freshman pitcher Blake Davis, who struck out 10 in four innings while allowing just two hits. “You don’t get to do this every day. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime thing.”
The Hawks (12-5) had a nine-run fourth inning to take control, and closed the game on the 10-run rule in the fifth inning when Hunter Edlin’s single, his fourth hit of the game, drove in Carter Ellingboe with the game’s final run.
The Hawks watched the movie “Field of Dreams” as a team last week, junior Chase Johnson said, but there’s a difference seeing the field on the screen and then getting a chance to play on it in real life.
“I thought, wow, we’re really going to play on a field that’s been in a movie,” Johnson said.
“We rolled in, and I was like, ‘This is the real deal,’” Davis said.
“I’ve seen the movie a couple of times,” coach Shane Weirather said. “Just seeing the house, the field, it’s cool. It’s really cool to see everything around it, the corn around the field, all that.”
There was the matter, of course, of actually playing the game.
“That’s the next thing,” Weirather said. “You want to show up here, you want to have a good time here, but I couldn’t have a good time here if we didn’t win.”
Davis struck out the side in the top of the first inning, then the Hawks opened the scoring when Edlin’s two-out single scored Kayden Calfee.
Davis also struck out three in the second inning, but Pekin’s Sven Dahlstrom hit a solo home run to left field to tie the game. Davis then struck out the side in the third.
“It’s great pitching here, but once you get out there you can’t think about it, though,” Davis said. “You have to just pitch.
“I had pretty good command today. The breaking ball was working. Everything was just falling together.”
“He’s played a lot of baseball,” Weirather said. “The velocity is already there as a freshman. And he can make pitches. That’s a good combination.”
Johnson gave the Hawks a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third with a home run to deep left field.
“It got on the barrel and I knew,” he said. “It just had that feeling.
“That just added to the feeling, and the experience of playing here, a lot. It’s a different feeling, I tell you, but it’s a good one.”
Pekin tied the game in the fourth, then the Hawks sent 13 batters to plate in the bottom of the inning. Cory Jones drove in three runs in the inning in two plate appearances, Zach Manwill drove in two runs with a single. Edlin, Calfee, Bo Herdrich, and Brayden Wyrick also drove in runs.
Johnson pitched the fifth inning and struck out the side.
“Outside of one batter (Pekin’s Alijah Brock lined into a fourth-inning double play), everything else was a strikeout,” Weirather said. “That’s a pretty good day.”
It was a moment late in the season that the Hawks needed.
“It is really nice to play in a new area, freshen it up,” Johnson said. “It was a fresh slate to play on.”
“It’s nice to get these games,” Weirather said. “Whether it’s at Busch Stadium, or anywhere special, this is cool. To get the community to come out for moments like this, it’s really neat.”
It was the perfect ending for the Hawks.
“I know,” Davis said, “this is something I’m always going to remember.”

Central Lee, Field of Dreams, Dyersville, Hawks, Pekin, Win, movie site, historic, win, varsity, sports, Chase Johnson, Blake Davis, Shane Weirather, Pen City Current,


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