Story and Photos by Spencer Pickles, with Files From Dar Rudnyckyj
June 28, 2017, Victoria, BC (ISN) – The Carnarvon Athletics defeated the Carnarvon Pirates in the GVBA U11 Mosquito (age 9-10) Championship game this past Sunday at Allenby Park in Victoria. Led by Brett Halme (14), who went four-for-four with a grand slam, the Athletics took a four-run lead after the second inning and survived a late push by the Pirates to win 13-8.
The U11 game got off to a big start with a grand slam in the first inning by the Athletics’ Brett Halme that went way up in the trees beyond the left-field fence. Undaunted, the Pirates battled back to put up 4 runs on A’s starter Myles Bolli in the bottom half to keep the game deadlocked.
Not to be denied, the A’s returned the favour in the top of the second with another 4-spot, highlighted by a 2-RBI triple to the left field fence by Max Rudnyckyj.
After the early fireworks, the game turned into a tight pitcher’s duel with Bolli and Pirates reliever Kaelan Hayashi putting up scoreless innings in the bottom of the second and top of the third, respectively.
With the Pirates threatening a big inning in the bottom of the third, A’s reliever Rowen Closs-Reidel came up big with a clutch strikeout of the Pirates’ cleanup hitter. Closs-Reidel would go on to put up a scoreless frame in the bottom of the fourth, despite a ringing double to centre by Aaron Maycock, before giving way to A’s reliever Noah Chan.
The A’s struck again for four runs in the top of the fifth, the big hit being a ringing double to centre by Bolli to bring the score to 12-5. Controversy erupted in the bottom of the frame on an overturned play at the plate. Not to be denied, the A’s battled back yielding only two runs in the inning, the key defensive play being an over the shoulder catch by third baseman Matthew Bavington, one of two stellar defensive plays he turned in on the afternoon.
In the top of the sixth, the A’s tacked on another insurance run, courtesy of an RBI double by Noah Chan. Chan would go on to seal the win in the bottom half, striking out the Pirates’ final batter on three pitches and delivering the A’s the 2017 championship.
Noah Chan (12) of the Athletics had a good day with two walks and two RBIs, as did Myles Bolli (10) with a walk and two RBIs.
Pirates’ players Kaelen Hayashi (9) and Thomas Beames (12) put in a good effort, pulling down three RBIs each in a losing effort.