In their first week on the diamond the Bulldogs split conference games Saturday, opening the day with an 8-4 conference loss to Dolores (4-3).
Presley Pene threw six walks and 10 Ks in 4.1 innings, allowing three hits and five runs. Marvin Guereque pitched one inning, allowing one hit and one earned run.
Pitchers threw well enough to win the game, said head coach Blake Carlquist. But the offense "had very few quality at-bats," getting just four hits off of Bears' senior Cameron Chavez.
The Bulldogs were also plagued with defensive errors. "They made us pay for every mistake," said Carlquist.
The Bears, who haven't had a win against Hotchkiss since 2014, got on the board in the first inning on a fence-hitting double by senior AJ Smith.
Hotchkiss answered in the second inning with a one-run single by William Scarlett.
After two scoreless innings, Dolores scored five runs on three hits and four walks in the top of the fifth, leaving two runners on base. In the bottom of the fifth, Bulldogs Yahir Chavez and Pene scored on a Marvin Guereque double to trail, 6-3.
In the sixth, Dolores's Smith added insult to injury with a two-run homer.
In the top of the seventh inning, freshman Parker Pene took the mound, holding the Bears to one walk, no runs and no hits.
With one out in the bottom of the seventh Pene hit a triple, and with two outs, Guereque singled. The final out came on a 5-3 play by the Bears.
In its 11-1 win over Ignacio Saturday afternoon, the team "changed its approach, and it paid off," said Carlquist. "They played a much better game."
Jamison Yanish pitched a complete game, allowing one hit and one run, no walks, and striking out nine batters in 67 pitches. Presley Pene had two hits and two RBIs, one run and two stolen bases for the game; Brian Gonzalez was 2 for 2 with two doubles and four RBIs. Yanish was 1-1 with a walk, sacrifice fly and RBI.
At 4 p.m. Wednesday, Hotchkiss plays at Cedaredge (3-6, 3A WSL).
Hotchkiss travels to Rangely (2-2) this week for a conference doubleheader. Rangely has lost to Nucla and Dove Creek, both currently at 4-2 and in second and third place, respectively, in 1A District 1 standings. Last season the Panthers were 1-19 last season. Carlquist said he's seen them play this season and they "are a much better team."