Cardinals Sweep A’s to Soar into BCPBL Lead

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The Cardinal's Kayden Beauregard (left) is all smiles after being mobbed by his teammates following his walk-off, game-winning double in game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

Story and Photos by Christian J. Stewart

May 6, 2018, Abbotsford, BC – The Abbotsford Cardinals soared to the top of the BC Premier Baseball League standings on Sunday as they completed a four-game, two-day sweep of the Okanagan A’s at DelAir Park in Abbotsford.

The Cardinal's Kevin Kim earned a pair of saves in the two wins over the A's on Saturday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
The Cardinal’s Kevin Kim earned a pair of saves in the two wins over the A’s on Saturday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

The four wins improve the Cardinals record to an impressive 9-1 to begin the 2018 season and puts them in a virtual tie for first with the 11-3 Parksville Royals, but with four games in hand over the Royals. The Langley Blaze, winners of three games this past weekend (see related article) are also now in the mix, just 1.5 games back.

Okanagan's Sunday game one starter Jackson Borne gave a gutsy performance, going 7.1 innings and holding the Cardinals to just two earned runs on five hits (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Okanagan’s Sunday game one starter Jackson Borne gave a gutsy performance, going 7.1 innings and holding the Cardinals to just two earned runs on five hits (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

The Cardinal’s four wins over the A’s this weekend all had something different to them and included a 3-0 shut-out in game one Saturday, a 5-3 win in game two Saturday night, that was suspended after six innings and had to be completed Sunday morning because the lights at DelAir Field would not come on, an extra innings 4-3 walk-off thriller in game one Sunday and a 10-3 rout to wrap the series up Sunday afternoon.

The Cardinal's Mike Fitzsimmons had a four-hit weekend, including two in the Cards 10-3 win in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
The Cardinal’s Mike Fitzsimmons had a four-hit weekend, including two in the Cards 10-3 win in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

In the first game of the series Saturday, Abbotsford starter Nick Graham would limit the A’s to just four hits over his five innings of work to get the win, with Kevin Kim one-hitting the A’s in the final two innings to get the save.

The Cardinals would get all the runs they needed in the second inning, scoring a pair of runs thanks to an RBI triple from Kayden Beauregard, who would then come in to score on a wild pitch.

Okanagan second baseman Jaden Parsons (left) gets ready to put the tag on the Cardinal's Mike Fitzsimmons on this steal attempt in game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Okanagan second baseman Jaden Parsons (left) gets ready to put the tag on the Cardinal’s Mike Fitzsimmons on this steal attempt in game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

An RBI single by Kieren Finn scored Shea Wutke (single) in the bottom of the sixth for insurance and Kim retired the side in the seventh to close out the 3-0 win.

In game two Saturday, the A’s would jump out to a 3-0 lead after four, but then watch as the Cardinals scored two in the fifth, two in the sixth and one more in the top of the seventh to come away with the 5-3 win.

Abbotsford catcher Romero Snow comes up firing after fielding a bunt attempt Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Abbotsford catcher Romero Snow comes up firing after fielding a bunt attempt Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

Chase Batchelor helped the A’s to their lead when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the second and then knocked in another run, the A’s third, with a single in the fourth.

The Cardinals fought back with a two-RBI single from Romero Snow in the fifth and then a two-run home run from Dylan Ohlsen in the sixth.  An RBI double from Kayden Beauregard in the seventh scored Carlin Dick (walk) to give the Cardinals some insurance.

Abbotsford pitcher Travis McDougall would get the start against the A's in game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Abbotsford pitcher Travis McDougall would get the start against the A’s in game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

Ryan Burton would get the win in relief of Brett Jackson for the Cardinals, while Kim would earn his second save of the day, closing out the seventh.

In game one Sunday, the A’s took a 1-0 lead when Luigi Russo wold be hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and eventually come in to score on a sacrifice fly by Owne Alstad.

Okanagan second baseman Jaden Parsons turns the double play on a sliding Kayden Beauregard (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Okanagan second baseman Jaden Parsons turns the double play on a sliding Kayden Beauregard (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

A Kayden Beauregard two-run home run off A’s starter Jackson Borne put the Cardinals up 2-1 in the third, but a pair of runs by the A’s in the top of the sixth would knock Cardinal’s starter Travis McDougall out of the game and give the A’s back their one-run lead.

That would be short-lived, as in the bottom of the sixth, Dylan Ohlsen would reach on a fielder’s choice, be moved to third on a Brett Bass double and then score on a Jayson Smith groundout to tie the game 3-3.

Abbotsford's Sasha Kamenjasevic would earn a win in relief in game one against the A's on Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Abbotsford’s Sasha Kamenjasevic would earn a win in relief in game one against the A’s on Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

Cardinal’s reliever Sasha Kamenjasevic and the A’s Borne, with a gutsy 7.1 innings of work on the day, then took the game into the bottom of the eighth and after an out, the A’s Borne was relieved by Ethan Huizinga, who promptly hit the Cardinal’s Taisei Yahiro with a pitch.  Two pitches later, Beauregard laced a double down the right field line (his second hit and third RBI of the game) to score Yahiro and give the Cards the exciting win.

The Cardinal's Kayden Beauregard watches his game-winning double head toward right field in the eighth inning of game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
The Cardinal’s Kayden Beauregard watches his game-winning double head toward right field in the eighth inning of game one Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

In the four game finale on Sunday, the Cardinal’s starter Taisei Yahiro would keep the A’s in check, holding them to just one run – an Alex Wright solo home run in the fourth – on four hits over his five innings of work, striking out seven in the process.

That would allow the Cardinals offence to go to work and they would score two in the first and three each in each of the fourth and fifth innings to spot Yahiro a 8-1 lead after five.

The Cardinal's Dylan Ohlsen would have quite a weekend, hitting a pair of home runs and getting three hits, with a homer and triple in the Cards 10-2 win Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
The Cardinal’s Dylan Ohlsen would have quite a weekend, hitting a pair of home runs and getting three hits, with a homer and triple in the Cards 10-2 win Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

The Cards would add two more in the sixth and while the A’s would match that with a pair of runs on a Kade Kozak two-RBI double in the bottom of the seventh, it would not be nearly enough as reliever Derrick Powell shut the door and closed out the sweep of the four game set.

Okanagan right fielder Cole Van Every makes a great effort to catch this sinking line drive in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Okanagan right fielder Cole Van Every makes a great effort to catch this sinking line drive in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

For the Cardinals, Dylan Ohlsen was a monster offensively, with three-hits, including a two-run homer – his second of the weekend – in the sixth and two RBI. Liam Knight and Mike Fitzsimmons also had two-hit games for the Cards, while Knight, Brett Bass and  Massimo Peranio also contributed to RBI to the winning cause.

The Cardinals game two starter on Sunday, Taisei Yahiro, would allow just one run on four hits over his five inning of work (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
The Cardinals game two starter on Sunday, Taisei Yahiro, would allow just one run on four hits over his five inning of work (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

Yahiro (2-0) gets the win, while A’s starter Keaton Mandryk (0-1) is tagged with the loss.

The Cardinals will now get ready for a key matchup with the Langley Blaze on Thursday night at McLeod Park and then travel to Victoria on the weekend for a pair of games with the Eagles on Saturday and a pair with the Mariners on Sunday.

The now 5-11 A’s head back home to entertain the White Rock Tritons for a four-game set on Saturday and Sunday May 12-13.

Abbotsford's Dylan Ohlsen (16) is congratulated by  Brett Bass (19) after hitting a two-run homer in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)
Abbotsford’s Dylan Ohlsen (16) is congratulated by Brett Bass (19) after hitting a two-run homer in game two Sunday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart)

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