Alvinston Indians Clinch ST Thomas League Final
Thursday September 26, 2013
CHAMPS DECLARED IN GAME 5 come from behind 3-2 Thriller.
The Alvinston Indians hosted the Shedden Mission in the fifth and final game of their best 3 out of 5 playoff championship series, for the St. Thomas & District Major Fastball League crown. Shedden took the first two games from Alvinston and had the regular season champions on the ropes, before Alvinston replied with two straight wins, to force game 5. Every game in the series had been a one run differential, with two out of the four games to this point, going to extra innings, including a ten inning marathon win for Alvinston in game four. The Thursday night game 5 finale in Alvinston, was also another tight game, that went down to the wire. A great crowd was on hand, for what was a very entertaining and intense battle!
After three innings, both teams had went through their lineup, with no base runners reaching base. Kyle Crawford for Alvinston and Nic Goetz for Shedden, the aces for both squads, were mowing down the batting lineups.
In the fourth however, the game took a dramatic turn, when Shedden struck first. Tyler Lynch siingled to lead off the inning, and advanced to second via a wild pitch. Crawford recorded the next two outs via the strikeout for the Indians, before Jason Dawdy and Mike Unwin both walked to load the bases for Shedden. Shedden catcher Jeff MacPherson did not let his team down, when he smashed a double down the line, to score two Shedden runners, and give his team an all-important 2-0 lead.
Alvinston tried to reply, but failed to do so, as Shedden starter Nic Goetz had a perfect game going into the seventh inning, allowing no Alvinston Indians to reach base, and retiring each and every Indians batter going to the plate. Goetz and the Shedden Mission needed only three outs, to win the League Championship.
That perfect game was busted in the seventh however, as excitement erupted in Alvinston. Joe Triest led off with a single, and Ty Sebastian did the same, smacking a single up the middle. The Indians and coach Paul "Chico" McCart, then made a gutsy move, executing the fake bunt double steal to perfection, to advance the runners to third and second, with nobody out. The next two batters however, were outs, and the game was in the hands of Alvinston third baseman Brad Cooper, as he stepped up to the plate, needing a hit to score two runners to keep the Indians alive. Cooper delivered in the clutch, as he did all series, smacking a sharp single to score both Triest and Sebastian to tie the game at two. All of a sudden a perfect game had disappeared for Goetz and Shedden, and Alvinston had knotted the game at 2's.
In typical fashion in this series, the game of course went to extra innings. Crawford set down Shedden in order in the top of the eighth inning, recording two more strikeouts, and gave the Indians a chance to win it in the bottom of the eighth. Shedden recorded the first out, but Alix Chisholm got the Indians going, when he reached base via an infield single. The next batter struck out for Alvinston, bringing Joe Triest to the plate. Goetz lost his footing on the second pitch of the Triest at bat, allowing Chisholm to advance to second base. Then with a 1 ball and 2 strike count on Joe, he hit the next pitch up the middle, allowing Chisholm to score from second for the game and series winning run. Alvinston came back from a 2-0 deficit in the game and series, to defeat Shedden 3-2 in the game and series. An impressive turn of events, when the Indians seemed down and out, but they never gave in, stunning the Mission and preventing them from earning the 2013 playoff championship.
Indians workhorse Kyle Crawford pitched all 62 innings of playoff baseball for the Indians, leading the Indians to a championship in 2013. He allowed only 23 runs in 62 innings pitched, and recorded a record of 6-2 in the playoffs. In this fifth and final game, Crawford allowed only three hits. He walked two Shedden batters and struckout 14 in the win. Nic Goetz was the hard luck loser, pitching what was a masterful game, before the Indians just wouldn't give in, and touched him up for three runs and five hits, with all hits and runs being recorded in the final two innings.
Brad Cooper for the Alvinston Indians turned in an incredible final series at the plate, going 11 for 17 in the series, with his biggest hit coming when he drove in both Alvinston runners in the seventh inning to tie the game. Joe Triest wasn't far behind him, going 8 for 15 in the final series, with his biggest hit coming when he effectively ended the game and series on his RBI single up the middle. Joe Triest was 6 for 9 in the final two games of the series.
A huge congratulations goes out to our opponents, the Shedden Mission, who made the playoff championship series with the Alvinston Indians, one of the best final series' ever. Great crowds were on hand for every game, and fans were treated to very intense games, with the outcome never being a sure thing, including three out of five games going to extra innings! A definite testament to how close this series was! Hats off to the Shedden Mission for your gutsy effort in the playoffs - you were very tough opponents.
All-in-all, the 2013 season ended a positive note for Alvinston, as they claimed their seventh League Playoff Championship, in 18 seasons in the St. Thomas & District Major Fastball League. The Alvinston Indians in their 18 season career in the league have been to the playoff championship final a total of 12 times. This season, they finished with a 25-6 overall record in league play, and have a league and playoff championship to show for their efforts.
Thanks to all of our fans for their support in 2013. See you next season!