15U AAA Team BC-Victoria Eagles Black capture Northwest Regional Championship in Tacoma
The Victoria Black Eagles representing BC extended their winning streak to nine over the weekend in Tacoma, Washington. With a decisive 9-4 victory over the player-depleted Bonney Lake Outlaws, the Black Eagles captured their first tournament championship outside of Canada. (By virtue of their runner-up finish in the AAA Bantam qualifier tournament held in Delta on June 25-28, the Black Eagles were rewarded with a spot in this 1st Annual GSL Northwest Regional Baseball Championship.) Also, this tournament was played on an MLB size diamond (60 feet to the mound and 90 foot base paths vs our league’s 54 feet mound distance and 80 foot base paths)
The Eagles started slow in their first round robin match-up with eventual finals opponent Bonney Lake. Matt Collett went five innings on the mound, striking out five Outlaw batters and only walking two. By the time Hayden Wilcox took over, Matt had limited the Outlaws to two runs. Meanwhile, despite 8 hits, Victoria could only squeeze two runs across the plate keeping the score tied going into the sixth inning. Finally, Noah Miller hit a single into right field and on the ensuing fielding error, lead runner Trey Sjerven raced around the diamond to score the go-ahead run. It was not the prettiest Eagle win, but it was win.
Up next, the FCA Knights from Woodinville, Washington. Trey battled on the mound in the 32 degree heat but the Knights jumped to a 8-1 lead going into the bottom of the third. It looked grim for the Black Eagles. Then it started with Jared Anderson running out an innocent Knight infield error to get on first. Then Cole Mayhew hit a liner up the middle. Then Andy Weir hit another liner to right field scoring Jared. Then Matt grounded out but scored Cole. Then Luke Seginowich hit a ground ball into left field driving in Andy. Suddenly the Knight’s seven run lead was whittled down to four and we had a game. On defence, Ethan Emile took to the mound and held the Knights to only four more hits. But in the bottom of the fifth, Victoria went on a rampage. Another hit from Andy, who went two for two plus a walk for the game. Ben Mulchinock added a hit. Nico Ingebrand lined to left field for a hit. Two more walks, and error, another hit from Jared (who also went two for two on the game) and the Black Eagles ate up the Knight’s lead and moved ahead for the 10-8 win to finish the round robin tied for first but seeded second due to run differential.
After a night’s rest, the bus took the Black Eagles 40 minutes to Ravendale Park with its artificial turf infield and brand new facility. Their semi-final game pitted them against the Washington Wave, also from Woodinville. The game only lasted three innings as Victoria scored 12 runs in the second inning triggering the tournament’s mercy rule decision. Nine Victoria batters got on base as we went through the order almost twice! Led by Ethan’s double, Ben’s double, Cole’s two RBIs and Luke’s two RBIs, it was no contest. On the mound, Noah Doorschot hardly got warmed up and continued on into the finals, 45 minutes later.
In the championship game against the Outlaws, one would expect another close game, but this time the Black Eagles meant business and jumped to a 4-0 lead in the first and added two runs in the third and three in the sixth. Noah did most of the work on the mound only allowing one walk and three hits for the win. Luke and Cole came in to help finish the job. Luke, Cole, and Nico all collected two hits leading the Victoria onslaught. The Black Eagles were just too much for the Knights and the boys took the bus trip home with tournament rings to add to their collection.