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2009 National Championships: Extra, Extra

OTTAWA – In the evening portion of games on this first Thursday of the 2009 Baseball Canada National Championships, three found themselves going to extra innings.

At the Baseball Canada Cup in Kindersley, Saskatchewan, Ontario held a 6-0 lead over Québec going into the fifth inning, but the team from la belle province rallied to score six runs in the inning and forced extras. But in the bottom of the eighth, Ontario regrouped as Michael Foster (Pickering, ON) hit a bases loaded, walk-off single as Ontario held on for the 7-6 win.

Phil Diedrick (Ajax, ON) hit a three-run home run in the first inning to give Ontario a 3-0 lead. Scott Wilcox (Burlington, ON) hit an RBI double to drive in the fourth run of the inning and give his team an early 4-0 lead.

Ontario held a 6-0 lead going into the top of the fifth when Québec exploded for six runs, highlighted by a two-run triple by Cédrick Vallières (Roxton Pound, QC).

The game remained tied until the bottom of the eighth and Foster’s heroics gave Ontario the win and helped avoid an embarrassing collapse.

Also at the Cup, Saskatchewan erased a 9-1 deficit against Prince Edward Island and came all the way back to win it in the bottom of the eighth by a score of 10-9.

PEI climbed to a 9-1 lead after four and a half innings helped by Brody McDonald (Cornwall, PEI) who went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI. But Saskatchewan started clawing back in the bottom of the fifth by scoring three times and adding two more in the sixth to bring the score to 9-6.

PEI completed the meltdown in the seventh when they had Saskatchewan on the ropes with two outs, but the bases were loaded and the score was 9-7. Ben Douglas (Moose Jaw, SK) came through in the clutch with a two-run single to tie the game and send it to extras.

In the bottom of the eighth, Saskatchewan completed the comeback when Dylan Ramsay (Saskatoon, SK) hit a two-out, bases loaded single for the walk-off victory.

At the Junior Championship in Trois-Rivières, Québec,   British Columbia was trailing the host team from Trois-Rivières 3-1 in the top of the seventh, but they scored two runs in the frame to tie the game, then took the lead in the top of the eighth with a three spot and held on for a 6-3 win.

Elsewhere at the Junior Championship, Québec squashed Nova Scotia 9-0 and Ontario (Mississauga) came back to beat Manitoba 3-1.

At the Canada Cup, Levi Westerlund (Oyen, AB) and Chad Leskiw (Selkirk, MB) were entangled in a pitcher’s duel, with both going the distance in a 2-1 Manitoba win over Alberta.

Leskiw threw seven innings, allowing one run on four hits with six strikeouts to earn the victory. Westerlund took the loss, tossing six innings, allowing two runs on three hits and three walks while striking out seven.

In other action, it was Nova Scotia all over Newfoundland, scoring early and often for a 10-2 win in Group B action.

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