The urgency of the situation was clear to Harper coach Cliff Brown.
"You got to win, or go home," he said.
With a 1-1 record in NJCAA Region IV double-elimination regional play after Saturday's games at Harper, Brown would rather not be facing elimination in Sunday's 9 a.m. matchup against Waubonsee Community College.
Then again: "1-1 is better than not playing tomorrow," Brown said.
Harper must win against Waubonsee, which won twice Saturday, in order to force a second game Sunday.
Harper's first game Saturday was a five-inning loss to Waubonsee.
"We didn't do what we wanted to (offensively)," said Harper's Tyler Crussen of the first-game defeat.
But the Hawks bounced back with a 14-5 win in 7 innings over Milwaukee Area Technical College to extend their postseason.
"Everyone (contributed) after the rough start," said Harper's Theo Yfantis, a Wheeling grad, after the victory. "It's easy to hit when there's pressure on the bases."
Yfantis' double helped spark the Hawks to a 6-run sixth inning. He finished the second game 3-for-3 with 5 RBI.
Brown shook up his regular lineup against Milwaukee, sending Crussen, the usual No. 2 hitter, into the No. 9 spot.
The freshman from Wheeler, Ind., produce top-of-the-order results there.
"My job is to get on base anyway I can," Crussen said. "We were making sure we were hitting our pitch."
Pitcher Steven Yfantis collected his first win of the postseason, giving up just 2 runs in his start.
"It's definitely easy to pitch (when you have a lead)," Steve Yfantis said.