By Jed Bick
TORONTO – Trevor Lofstrom had enough chances to finally take advantage of one.
The British Columbia Orange infielder, whose at-bat was extended when his foul pop was dropped, broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the seventh inning with a two-run double leading to a 5-2 defeat of defending champion Atlantic Grey.
“I kind of got lucky,” said Lofstrom. “I fouled off the first pitch and (the first baseman) dropped it. Then I fouled off another one, but after got a pitch down the middle and just threw the bat head on it.”
The game was a pitchers’ duel for three innings as British Columbia Orange starting pitcher Will McAffer had six strikeouts without giving up a hit. Atlantic Grey starter Luc Hebert was perfect through three innings with three strikeouts.
Atlantic Grey scored first in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Darcy Affleck doubled home Anthony McKinley, who counted Atlantic Grey’s first hit against British Columbia’s reliever Carter Loewen. After a Cole MacLaren walk, Jed Noonan singled home Affleck for a 2-0 lead, with MacLaren being thrown out at home on the play on a strong peg from left fielder Jordan Dray.
British Columbia tied the game in the top of the sixth inning. Lofstrom led off with a walk, Tanner Rempel singled and Dakota Curry, who had recorded the game’s first hit in the top of the fourth, doubled to drive in two runs to make it 2-2.
“I was confident in the team, we knew we were going to get hits eventually and it happened at the right time,” Curry said.
“The pitcher wasn’t throwing overly hard so I sat back and waited for that fastball. It seemed like he was throwing about 75, so I just tried to get the barrel out and hit something hard. I wanted to pull it so both runners would score.”
After Hayden Jaco led off the top of the seventh with a double to left, an error and walk loaded the bases with none out. The dropped foul ball gave Lofstrom another chance, as did another foul pop that narrowly went out of play, and he then lined a ground-rule double into left field for the go-ahead runs.
A sacrifice fly by Rempel gave British Columbia its final run. Matteo Vincelli picked up the win with two innings of perfect relief, including five strikeouts. Tyler Hennessey took the loss in relief for Atlantic Grey.
– The full Tournament 12 schedule can be found here.