Off to na­tion­als

Char­lot­te­town beats Summerside to earn P.E.I.’s berth at na­tional ban­tam ch’ship

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS -

Char­lot­te­town beats Summerside to earn P.E.I.’s berth at Base­ball Canada’s ban­tam cham­pi­onship.

Con­nor McGre­gor was a force both in the field and at the plate.

As a re­sult, the Char­lot­te­town Roy­als are headed to the Base­ball Canada na­tional ban­tam cham­pi­onship in Vaughan, Ont., from Aug. 20 to 24.

The right-handed McGre­gor re­tired the first 11 bat­ters he faced, pitched four-hit ball and al­lowed two runs while fan­ning 11 over 5 2/3 in­nings to earn the win as the Roy­als de­feated the Summerside Chevys 9-4 in the cham­pi­onship game of the Base­ball P.E.I. pro­vin­cial ban­tam AAA elim­i­na­tion tour­na­ment.

Of­fen­sively, McGre­gor reached base three times in four plate ap­pear­ances and scored three runs at Queen El­iz­a­beth Park’s Le­gends Field on Sun­day.

“It was one of my best (per­for­mances) ever,” said the 15-yearold McGre­gor, who is from Sher­wood-Park­dale.

Gabriel Pe­nalver recorded the game’s fi­nal four outs while starter Ben MacDougall was the pitcher of record for Summerside.

Hot pitcher

“We ran into a very hot pitcher with Char­lot­te­town,” as­sessed Chevys head coach Dale MacDougall. “Hats off to Con­nor McGre­gor, he pitched a heck of a game.

“If we were able to elim­i­nate a few lit­tle mis­takes here and there, it would have been a closer ball game.”

Af­ter tak­ing a 1-0 lead in the top of the first in­ning, the Roy­als took con­trol with a five-run third in­ning.

They in­creased that mar­gin to 7-0 in the top of the fourth.

“It was very im­por­tant (to get the lead),” said McGre­gor. “It’s a lot eas­ier be­cause you don’t have any pres­sure on you.”

Af­ter Summerside scored sin­gle runs in the fourth and fifth in­nings, each team scored twice in the sev­enth.

Chances

The Chevys did have their chances to get back in the game. Summerside stranded eight run­ners in the fi­nal four in­nings, in­clud­ing six in scor­ing po­si­tion.

“I’m very proud of these guys,” said Coach MacDougall. “We never say, ‘quit,’ and I don’t care if the score is 15-0 there’s a never-say-die at­ti­tude. I have a young team (seven first-year ban­tams), and it’s great bat­tling with these guys.”

Pa­trick Young and Eric An­der­son each drove in two runs for the Roy­als while Josh Dow had a run-scor­ing triple. Char­lot­te­town scored two runs on fielder’s choices and one each on a wild pitch and passed ball.

McGre­gor praised the game call­ing of catcher Pa­trick Young.

“He called me a lot of fast­balls be­cause they couldn’t catch up with them,” said McGre­gor, who started a two-out rally in the first in­ning with an in­field sin­gle. He stole sec­ond base and later scored on a wild pitch to give the Roy­als an early lead they would never re­lin­quish. Char­lot­te­town Roy­als would go on to score their first seven runs of the game all with two outs.

JASON SIM­MONDS/JOUR­NAL PI­O­NEER

Char­lot­te­town Roy­als pitcher Con­nor McGre­gor de­liv­ers a pitch in the cham­pi­onship game of the Base­ball P.E.I. pro­vin­cial ban­tam AAA elim­i­na­tion tour­na­ment at Queen El­iz­a­beth Park’s Le­gends Field on Sun­day.

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