Although some calls by the umpires were questioned, there was no doubt that the final game of the season was a beautiful way to end the playoffs.
“I don’t know what else you’d want for a final game in our first season, it was a pretty fun game to play in,” said Pirates captain Mike Tuton. “There was a lot of emotion in the game from both benches; we were getting fired up as the game went on.
“It would be hard to find anyone who wouldn’t say that game wasn’t exciting.”
The Whitehorse Fastball League wrapped up Sunday evening at the Pepsi Softball Centre in Whitehorse, with the Roadhouse Pirates defeating the Casa Loma Jays 10-9 and taking the championship in one of the most exciting games of the year.
Even the defeated Jays captain, Jared Tuton, who could not play because of a broken wrist sustained in practice, was accepting of the results.
“I think that was the best we’ve played all year,” said Jared. “Even how we lost was a good way to lose.
“It was a good first year and a good way to end the year.”
In the second close game of the evening, the Pirates took the championships in the bottom of the final inning. Up 9-8 and facing loaded bases and no outs, the Jays managed to stave off the tying run, tagging out Derek Baldwin at home. However, with a swing of his bat, Pirates Matt Thomson gave his team the win with a line drive to right field, scoring Mike Gau from third and Logan Freese from second.
“That was probably his best game of the season,” said Mike. “He’s new to the sport; we took him onto the teams as a new guy. And today was a good game for him to break through and have a really good game.
“We moved him up to the number two spot today—we were short of a lot of our regulars, so we had to do some scrambling—but he really pulled through for us.”
Thomson, who also produced an RBI in the bottom of the first, went 3-for-4 at the plate.
“They call me a rookie,” said Thomson. “I played when I was a little kid, too.
“This is so much fun, it’s so fast—everyone should play this game!”
Before the Pirates’ final at-bat, the Jays looked like they might take the game, scoring four runs to move ahead at 9-8. With bases loaded, courtesy runner Currie Dixon came home on a wild pitch before Dan Johnson beamed one to centre field, putting in two and tying the game. Mark King then sent a deep sacrifice fly to left field to bring in the Jays’ final run.
The Pirates earned a bye to the finals with a 9-7 win over the Jays the previous weekend.
The Jays got their ticket to the finals in another close battle, defeating the Chilkoot Steel Oldtimers 7-6 in a comeback performance before the finals.
The Oldtimers scored five runs in the first inning, but the Jays rallied back to tie the score at 5-5 by the end of the fifth inning. However, after Oldtimers’ Doug Cook got in on a hit by Dave Hecker in the top of the sixth, the Jays won the game in the bottom of the inning, scoring two runs on a hit by Josh Clark.
“A lot of funny hits end up winning the game,” said Oldtimers pitcher Jeff Jensen. “You just poke one in between two infielders—it barely hits the grass but it ends up scoring a run.”
The Oldtimers advanced to Sunday’s semis with a 7-0 forfeit win over the Cinderwood Cardinals on August 2. The Cardinals actually won the game 10-9 but were forced to borrow players, thereby forfeiting the game in the eyes of the record book.
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