ORLANDO, Florida – The Junior National Team had a 2-0 lead but could not hold on as the Houston Astros came back to get a 3-2 victory at the Fall Instructional League Camp.
The Canadians took a 1-0 lead in top of the second when Justin Atkinson (Surrey, BC) led off the frame with a single and would come around to score on the RBI triple from Phil Diedrick (Ajax, ON).
Mike Ellis (Surrey, BC) got the start on the mound and threw three scoreless innings. He allowed only one hit while striking out three.
Canada would take a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning. Rowan Wick (North Vancouver, BC) hit a leadoff double, one of three on the day for Wick, and Kellin Deglan (Langley, BC) followed by reaching on an error. After Diedrick loaded the bases by drawing a one out walk, Alex Calbick (Burnaby, BC) hit a ground ball to first, forcing Wick at the plate for the second out. Simon Brisebois (Mascouche, QC) hit a single up the middle to score Deglan.
Houston would cut that lead in half in the bottom half of the inning when an infield single, an error and another single against reliever Levi Westerlund (Oyen, AB) led to an Astros run to make it 2-1.
The Astros tied the game in the sixth when a one out walk, followed by a pair of singles drove in a run to make it 2-2. Westerlund pitched three innings, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk.
The comeback was completed in the eighth against reliever Brian Smith (Pickering, ON). A two out single followed by a stolen base put the go ahead run in scoring position. A throwing error allowed the runner score the go ahead run and Houston would hold on for the win.
Smith threw three innings of relief, allowing an unearned run on three hits with three strikeouts during his outing.
The Junior National Team will take the field again on Tuesday, October 13th at 1 PM when they take on the Pittsburgh Pirates at Champion Stadium at Disney’s Wide World of Sports.
with files from Bob Elliott
Canadian Baseball Network article