Fast­ball win­ners

Syd­ney main­tains first place stand­ing in NSSBL


White Sox edge Di­a­mond­backs to win Ni­chols tour­na­ment.

The Syd­ney Soon­ers’ home ball­park may soon need a new home plate af­ter 42 runs were scored in Satur­day’s dou­ble­header.

The Soon­ers man­aged a split of the high-scor­ing af­ter­noon twin­bill against the Hal­i­fax Pel­ham Mol­son Cana­di­ans, but man­ager Jim (Rico) McEach­ern said it could have been worse and it could have been bet­ter.

“With our win on Fri­day it means we won two out of three and you could ar­gue that we were lucky to do that,” said the long­time bench boss.

“But, we were win­ning 8-2 in the last game and ended up los­ing 14-11, so it also could have been bet­ter.”

Fol­low­ing Fri­day’s 6-2 win, the Soon­ers were look­ing to sweep their Hal­i­fax ri­vals on Satur­day and got off to a good start by tak­ing the first game 9-8 af­ter a dra­matic ninth-in­ning walk-off win un­der sunny skies at the Su­san McEach­ern Me­mo­rial Ball Park.

But, there was plenty of drama prior to the fi­nal in­ning. With Hal­i­fax lead­ing 4-0, the Soon­ers’ Matt Den­ney launched a three­run home run over the left field fence to bring Syd­ney back into the game.

Another three­run rally in the eighth gave the home side a tworun lead head­ing into the ninth. The visi­tors then mounted their own rally that net­ted them four runs and an 86 lead.

The dra­mat­ics were not over, though, as the Soon­ers staged another rally that was high­lighted by Justin Brewer’s gamewin­ning sin­gle that drove in the ty­ing and win­ning runs.

Nate Brewer, of Gar­diner Mines, was cred­ited with the win af­ter com­ing on to re­lieve An­thony Ianetti, who had ear­lier re­placed rookie Reilly O’Rourke.

The sec­ond game be­gan with a bang as Den­ney hit his sec­ond home run of the day as he pounded a Mark Haver­stock of­fer­ing over the left­field fence with the bases loaded.

“I’ll have to re­mem­ber what I had for break­fast and eat it again next week,” said Den­ney, who is sec­ond in league bat­ting with a .431 av­er­age.

The Soon­ers con­tin­ued to pro­duce runs and by the end of the third in­ning had an 8-2 lead. But then it be­gan to un­ravel for the lo­cal lads.

Start­ing pitcher Nate Brewer, who has been pitch­ing bril­liantly all sea­son, was roughed up for four runs in the fourth in­ning and by the end of six the Soon­ers’ lead had been cut to just one run.

Then, af­ter Hal­i­fax’s man­ager and coach had been thrown out of the game fol­low­ing their vo­cal protests over an um­pir­ing call, the visi­tors came to life and by the end of the sev­enth in­ning had pushed seven more runs across home plate.

With his team trail­ing 14-8 in the eight in­ning, Justin Brewer hit a solo homer over the fence in left­field. And, in the ninth in­ning the Soon­ers gave them­selves some hope af­ter they scored a cou­ple of runs and then loaded the bases with one out.

How­ever, Hal­i­fax man­aged to turn a game-win­ning dou­ble play and that was the ball game.

The Soon­ers are now 12-5 on the sea­son and hold a half-game lead over the Dart­mouth Moose­head Dry (10-4), while Hal­i­fax sits third in the Nova Sco­tia Se­nior Base­ball League stand­ings with an 8-9 record.

The two-time de­fend­ing league cham­pi­ons are back in ac­tion next week­end when they host Dart­mouth in a three-game se­ries that in­cludes a Fri­day night match (7 p.m.) and a Satur­day dou­ble­header (12 noon and 3 p.m.).


The Soon­ers’ Matt Den­ney, shown here lash­ing a sin­gle in the sec­ond game of Satur­day’s dou­ble­header, hit a home run in each of the two games, in­clud­ing a grand slam, as Syd­ney split the twin­bill with the Hal­i­fax Pel­ham Mol­son Cana­di­ans.



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