In 2008, Ashley Tamraz watched Hiawatha’s postseason run from the stands.
Tamraz, who has played catcher and pitched for the Hawks this season, was watching her sisters, Kaitlin and Cassie, as Hiawatha went on to win a regional title, defeating Dakota, 4-2, in the Class 1A East Dubuque Regional final. The Hawks’ postseason run ended against Durand in the Eastland Sectional final.
This season, Hiawatha is aiming for another regional crown as the top seed in the Class 1A Durand Regional. At 4 p.m.Tuesday, the Hawks will take on the winner of this afternoon’s play-in game between No. 4 Durand and fifth-seeded Rockford Christian Life.
With a win, Hiawatha will play the winner of Tuesday’s other semifinal between second-seeded Alden-Hebron and No. 3 South Beloit.
The Hawks are hoping to see a repeat of 2008.
“Five years ago they proved that Hiawatha was good, and we want to do that again,” Tamraz said.
The Hawks haven’t had a ton of athletic success in recent memory. However, Tamraz was part of Hiawatha’s 2012 Class 1A basketball regional championship team – the first in school history.
She hopes a Hawks championship will silence some of the doubters.
“[A regional title] would be amazing,” Tamraz said. “Softball’s my favorite sport; it felt amazing in basketball. Hiawatha’s like the underdog, it’d feel so cool to prove everyone wrong again.”
Hiawatha coach David Tamraz said he’s confident in his pitching and defense. To him, the key is just getting some clutch hitting. One thing that has benefitted the Hawks lately has been the switch of Dani Clark to the leadoff spot, where David Tamraz said she feels relaxed.
“I think the key for us is timely hitting,” Tamraz said. “If I can get Dani Clark on base, I think we can get some runs for her. That’s the key.”
For David Tamraz, who’s in his first year as Hiawatha’s coach, a regional title would be a fitting way to end the school year.
“I’d like to win it for the girls, but they have to win it for themselves. All I can do is guide them,” he said. “It would be nice for the seniors. Seniors went through tough times this year in every sport. So yeah, it would be nice for the school and the seniors, and the rest of the team.”