OTTAWA – Both championship games went down to the wire as there was no lack of dramatics in Kindersley, Saskatchewan for the Baseball Canada Cup and in Trois-Rivières, Québec for the Junior National Championship.
In Kindersley, British Columbia and Québec were looking to capture the Baseball Canada Cup in what was a tremendous ball game.
It was B.C. who opened the scoring in the top of the second when Jeremy Filipek (Langley, BC) hit an RBI double to give his team an early 1-0 lead.
They added to that lead in the top of the third. With Tyson Popoff (Richmond, BC) on second and one out, Justin Atkinson (Surrey, BC) reached on an error, which allowed Popoff to score to make it 2-0 for B.C. Atkinson later scored on a Nic Mahovlich (Coquitlam, BC) RBI single to give B.C. a three run lead.
But Québec’s offence broke out in the bottom of the third with a five-run inning, highlighted by a Simon Brisebois (Mascouche, QC) two-run double and Québec took a 5-3 lead.
But B.C. did not go away. They reduced the lead to one in the fourth when Popoff drew a base loaded walk, then scored three runs in the sixth on a bases loaded walk, an error and a ground out to retake the lead 7-5.
Québec brought that lead down to one in the bottom half of the sixth when Jonathan Jones (Lorraine, QC) came in to score on a Brian Bardis (St-Constant, QC) ground out.
Tom Robson (Ladner, BC) came in to close out the game in the bottom of the seventh for B.C. and he threw a perfect one-two-three inning to give British Columbia its eighth Baseball Canada Cup title.
In the bronze medal game, Phil Diedrick (Ajax, ON) went 3-for-4 and Scott Wilcox (Burlington, ON) went 3-for-3, while Brian Smith (Pickering, ON) threw five innings, allowing one run on two hits and two walks and struck out seven to lead Ontario to capture the bronze over Alberta by a score of 8-5.
In Trois-Rivières, the gold medal game went to the 11th inning before a winner was decided in what was an epic matchup between Québec and Ontario (Windsor).
With the game tied 2-2 going into the top of the 11th, Michael Page (L’Épiphanie, QC) stroked a double which brought in Alexandre Villeneuve (Lévis, QC) to give Québec the 3-2 lead.
In the bottom of the 11th, and with the tying run on base with two outs, Philippe Charpentier (L’Épiphanie, QC) struck out pinch hitter BJ Harris (Harrow, ON) and the Québec dugout ran onto the field in celebration, capturing the Junior national title.
It was British Columbia and Trois-Rivières who would battle it out for the bronze and in what was a terrific back-and-forth matchup, B.C would come out on top and take home the bronze with a 4-3 win.
Next up at the Baseball Canada National Championships is the Midget division who will vie for national supremacy in Fredericton, New Brunswick starting on Thursday, August 13th, which can be seen live on the Baseball Canada website at the following link: http://www.baseball.ca/eng_doc.cfm?DocID=145