On this BC Day long weekend, August 2-5, the BC Minor Baseball Midget AA Provincial Tournament took place in Mission at the Mission Athletic Park.
Ten teams from across British Columbia took place in the tournament over four days.
The Aldergrove Dodgers went 3 in 1 in pool play and finished second in their pool. They had to face a very tough Prince George Knight’s team.
Prince George finished first place in their pool, going undefeated (4-0).
Aldergrove got out to an early lead in the first inning with a grand slam home run from Trevor Alcos. Aldergrove continued to press earning another run in the third inning.
Prince George bounced back and scored three runs in the third to bring the lead to just one. Aldergrove scored another pair of runs in the fifth and sixth. The defense for Aldergrove was outstanding. The starting pitcher, Shone Fyke battled hard for four-plus inning. Backing him up was Brendan Winning, who shut down the Prince George offense.
The final score of the Semi-Finals was 7-4 for Aldergrove. The team was loud and proud as were the parents and fans, as Aldergrove now advanced to the Finals.
Meeting Aldergrove in the Finals was the Ladner Red Sox. They had finished second in their pool after beating the Tri-Cities Thunder in a close game. Both teams went three up, three down in the first inning.
In the second inning Aldergrove scored two runs and Lander came back to score one. Ladner came back and put up two more runs in the third, taking the lead. Aldergrove battled back with a better offense and added one in the fourth to tie the game.
There were a number key hits from Mikey Saulter, Ethan Hopink and Brenden Johnson. Aldergrove was hitting big but Ladner’s centre-fielder was making key catches at the time.
The defense for Aldergrove was making key plays through the game. The outfield of Jordan Epp, Kyson Burgart and Aaron Bitcshy make several key catches to shut down Ladner’s hitting.
Going into the top of the seventh inning the Aldergrove Dodgers were down by a run. Ladner walked the first Dodger batter Johnson and then came the turning point, a hit to right field by Elias Baker to tie up the game.
Baker then stole the bases. With Baker on third the pitcher overthrew the catcher and Baker make a run for home with a head first slide. He was safe, safe, safe!
The bottom of the seventh had Ladner now down by one run. The starting pitcher Michael Adam pitched an incredible six innings. Now Aaron Bitcshy was called in to shut down Ladner’s offence. Aaron stuck out the first batter. The second batter ground out to Brenden Winning at shortstop. Aaron then walked the next batter who then stole second base. Now with the tying run on second the next batter grounded to shortstop but was safe at first base in a very close call.
First baseman Brenden Johnson saw the Ladner runner take off to third base. Brenden gunned the ball to Ethan Hopink at third to pick off the runner to win the 2018 BC Midget AA Baseball Tournament.
These boys played their best baseball of the season this weekend.
Many thanks to all the players and parents and fans from Aldergrove that came out to support this team. This has been an incredible season of baseball filled with great lifelong memories.
The team is off to San Francisco to represent Team BC in the Nor Cal Select TBL U18 Wood Bat Tournament from Aug 11 to 12.