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Hughes goes yard, leads Heat to sweep
Former big leaguer drives in four in victory
11/04/2012 12:04 AM ET
Luke Hughes launched a three-run homer in the first on Saturday.
Luke Hughes launched a three-run homer in the first on Saturday. (Ryan Schembri / SMP Images)
ADELAIDE, 3 November - Luke Hughes drove in four runs as the the Alcohol. Think Again Perth Heat overcame the Adelaide Bite driven by SA Power Networks 8-4 Saturday to complete a three game sweep to rise to the top of the of The ABL, brought to you by 'Be The Influence: Tackling Binge Drinking' table.

Scoring 22 runs in the opening two games, the Heat picked up where they left off in the top of the first inning against a shaky Dushan Ruzic. A leadoff double to Corey Adamson and walk to Melker brought up Luke Hughes who disposed the ball over the centerfield fence. Hughes' first homerun of the season gave the Heat an early 3-0 buffer without recording an out.

Ruzic would settle and silence the Heat's offense for the next five innings as the Bite bounced back with a long ball of their own. A Chris Adamson double brought in Angus Roeger and Dylan Child capitalised going yard to left as the Bite put pressure on Heat starter Scott Mitchinson. Quickly reloading the bases with two walks and a single, the Bite looked to threaten with a big inning. Mitchinson escaped the loaded bases jam inducing a grounder to first from the bat off Justin Howard, ending the threat and leaving the scores tied at three.

The Bite and the Heat traded scoreless frames until the seventh as both team managers went to the bullpen after five innings. Daniel Schmidt allowed one hit through his three innings of relief and the Bite bullpen would crumble allowing the Heat to jump ahead 5-3 in the seventh thanks to an Amberson single to center that scored de San Miguel and Kevin Clark on a throwing error.

Some sloppy defense from the Heat in the seventh inning let the Bite back within one run as Cakebread reached first on a throwing error and scored on another. With the scores at 5-4 in the ninth, Adamson would score on Hughes' sacrifice fly and a Tim Kennelly double would score another run as the Heat put the game out of the Bite's reach. Cameron Lamb closed out the game, allowing only a single to Cakebread as the Heat received a giant confidence boost ahead of some tough games next week in the Asia Series.

Heat Manager Steve Fish was obviously pleased with the results from his players heading into their trip to Korea.

"We came out with all guns blazing in the first game and never looked back from there. I think our pitching was great, which is exactly what we need heading into Korea. Both Vasquez and Claggett did extremely well and Mitchinson may have had a rough second inning but bounced back well. Schmidt and Lamb were strong out of the bullpen so I couldn't have asked for more than that."

Sunday, the victorious Heat head back to Perth to ready for their flight to Korea on Monday. Stay tuned to the Perth Heat's Facebook and Twitter pages all week for coverage of the Heat's massive games against Korea's Lotte Giants on Thursday and their matchup against the as of yet undecided Champion of the Nippon Professional League on Friday.

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.