* SS Louis Boyd (North Vancouver, BC), above, and C Chris Shaw (Winnipeg, Man.) of the Midland Chaparrals earned JUCO all-tourney honours at the Alpine Bank JUCO World Series at Suplizio Field in Grand Junction, Col. .... 2014 Canadians drafted … Canadians in the Minors … Canadians in College
2015 Canadian draft list
By Bob Elliott
The middle of the diamond has been described as where the nightly ballet of bruises takes place.
Infielders taking throws and trying to jump over an charging bull trying to break up two (or one leg).
Glove men trying to grab errant throws, find the bag and get a throw off to first.
And then there is Cochise Apaches shortstop Louis Boyd.
Boyd (North Vancouver, BC) fielded a ball bare handed in mid air off the third baseman ... for the not-so-routine 5-6-3 final out of the third inning with a man on base in the third inning as Cochise beat the Delgado Dolphins 9-6 in the second game of the Alpine Bank JUCO World Series at Suplizio Field in Grand Junction, Col.
Cochise won only one game, but Boyd’s performance -- hitting .533 (8-for-15) with two doubles and six RBIs -- earned him a spot on the all-tournament team.
C Chris Shaw (Winnipeg, Man.) of the Midland Chaparrals also earned a spot on the all-tourney team hitting .385 (5-for-13) with two homers and six RBIs.
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The Iowa Western Reivers’ used 11 runs in the final three innings to win its third NJCAA national championship in the past five years over the Miami Dade Sharks before 10,123 fans.
Iowa Western has won three national championships in the past five years (2010, 2012, 2014) and is the spot where INF-RHP Matt Lloyd (Okotoks, Alta.) of the Okotoks Dawgs is headed this fall.
No less than 162 Canadians were on the rosters of junior college Division I teams at the start of the season and seven Canadians made it to Grand Junction.
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SS Louis Boyd (North Vancouver, BC), INF-OF Jovan Ewusie (Vancouver BC) and C Riley MacDonald (Vancouver, BC) Cochise Apaches.
At the Alpine Bank JUCO World Series ...
_ Boyd had a pair of hits losing the opener a loss to the Blinn Buccaneers 7-4 before 3,883 fans. He led off the game by hitting a 1-1 pitch through the right side for a single , walked in the fifth and singled on a 1-2 pitch to lead off the ninth and scored. Ewusie pinch ran at first with the tying run in the on-deck circle but the game ended on a double play.
_ Boyd went 3-for-4 in a 9-5 win over Delgado in front of 2,308 fans. Boyd singled to centre and scored in the third for a 3-1 lead, singled the middle in the fifth to put the Apaches ahead 4-2 and singled home a run and later scored in the three-run sixth for a 7-2 lead.
_ Boyd was 3-for-7 with two doubles and five RBIs as Cochise was eliminated with a 12-11, 12-inning loss to Columbia State in front of 7,840 fans. Boyd doubled down the right field line in the fifth to score a pair of runs for the Cochise‘s first two runs of the game, cutting the lead to 6-2, hit a two-out double down the left field line scoring three runs in the five-run sixth, tying the score at 7-7, singled in the 10th. Cochise had the bases loaded for a line drive to centre to score one Apache and Boyd, with another runner thrown out at home, to put the Apaches up 11-9. A two-run home run in the bottom of the inning tied it again. And in the bottom of the 12th, Delgado sent a full-count pitch over the left field wall.
“We were feeling super confident, but that team wouldn’t go away,” freshman Boyd told reporters. “We tried to put them away a couple of times, but they just kept fighting back and it was a great game.
“The way we battled, the whole atmosphere we went through and the experience we gained,” Boyd said under the stands on the third-base side of Suplizio Field, as dozens of kids asked players for autographs. “You lose a tough game, you’re crying five minutes ago, and these kids give you a smile on your face.”
How they got there: by winning the Western District championship in Phoenix for the Apaches second straight trip to the NJCAA Division I World Series in Grand Junction.
_ Boyd was 3-for-3 with a solo homer as Cochise overcame an 8-7 deficit in the top of the ninth to score seven times and beat the Trinidad State Trojans 14-8. Ewusie knocked in a run. The lead-off man reached on an infield single and Ewusie came on to pinch run. A ground ball to the short stop which could have been a double play, was thrown past the second baseman, allowing Ewusie to score all the way from first to tie the game. Two batters later Boyd was walked intentionally with a man on third. INF Julien Belanger (Batiscan, Que.) doubled, singled and knocked in two runs for the Trojans. RHP Alex Rogers (Nanaimo, BC) started but was not involved in the decision as he pitched four innings allowing six runs on nine hits and two walks, as he struck out a pair. RP Jean-Felix Proulx (Nicolet, Que.) had a scoreless outing working 2/3 of an inning.
_ Ewusie tripled, singled and drove in a pair in a 13-3 victory over South Mountain Cougars. Boyd doubled in a pair of runs.
_ Boyd homered, doubled and knocked in three in a 10-5 loss to South Mountain.
_ Then Boyd went 4-for-5 with an RBI in a 12-11 victory over South Mountain to advance.
On the season ... for the 37-29 Apaches ... Boyd hit .343 with 13 doubles, three triples, three homers and 38 RBIs, with a .877 OPS in 66 games ... Ewusie batted .246 with two doubles, a triple, two homers and 13 RBIs, with a .813 OPS in 41 games ... MacDonald hit .185 three doubles and four RBIs and a .590 OPS in 13 games ... Boyd and MacDonald played for North Shore Twins, while Ewusie played for the Vancouver Cannons. All three will play with the Langley Blaze this summer.
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C Chris Shaw (Winnipeg, Man.) OF Chris Thibideau (Dartmouth, NS) and INF Justin Clarkson (Nanaimo, BC) Midland Chaparrals.
At the Alpine Bank JUCO World Series ...
_ Shaw singled to drive in a pair of runs in a 10-5 win over Johnson County Cavaliers in the opener before 5,603 fans, while Clarkson had a pair of hits and an RBI and Thibideau had one hit.
_ Clarkson had a hit as Midland was blanked 4-0 by the Iowa Western Reivers, the eventual champs in front of 12,014.
_ Shaw was 4-for-4 with four RBIs as Midland eliminated Columbia State 10-7 in front of 2,082 fans. Shaw hit a two-run homer down the left-field line on a 1-1 pitch for a two-run homer, singled to right in the second, hit a two-run homer to right for a 9-3 lead in the third and singled up the middle leading off the sixth. Clarkson had one hit and an RBI.
_ Clarkson had a pair of hits as Midland was eliminated in an 11-1 loss by Iowa Western.
How they got to Grand Junction ... by winning the Region 5 Tournament at Texas Tech University’s Dan Law Field in Lubbock, Tex. as the top four teams from the Western Conference and the North Texas Conference squared off ...
_ Shaw hit two solo homers and singled as the 4th-seeded Chaps edged top-seeded Grayson County 10-9. 3B Clarkson added three hits, including a double, and LF Thibideau had a pair of hits.
_ Shaw had a pair of hits, while Thibideau singled and stole a base in an 8-2 loss to 3rd-seeded McLennan.
_ 1B Shaw was 4-for-5 with two RBIs as Midland scored five times in the eighth for a 15-10 win over 2nd-seeded North Central Texas. LF Thibideau had two hits, including a homer and three RBIs.
_ 3B Clarkson then had two hits, including a double knocked in a run and stole a pair of bases in an 11-6 victory against Grayson. Shaw doubled in two and Thibideau singled.
_ C Shaw doubled and drove in three runs in a 6-5 win over the 3rd-seeded Howard Hawks, 3B Clarkson had two hits, including a triple, and knocked in a run and Thibideau singled, CF Julian Service (Whitby, Ont.) had two hits and a single for Howard.
_ Shaw singled and Clarkson knocked in a run in a 5-4 over McLennan to create a winner-take-a-trip-to-Colorado final
_ Thibideau doubled and knocked in three runs in an 11-6 over McLennan. Clarkson had two hits to score a run and Shaw singled.
All-Region honours ... OF Chris Thibideau (Dartmouth, NS) Midland, C Chris Shaw (Winnipeg, Man.), Midland, ... Honourable mention: INF Justin Clarkson (Nanaimo, BC), Midland; LHP Fernando Fernandez-Beltran (Montreal, Que.) New Mexico Jr.
On the season ... for the 43-25 Chaps ... Shaw hit .384 with 22 doubles, 14 homers and 63 RBIs with a 1.178 OPS in 57 games ... Clarkson batted .364 with 17 doubles, six triples, five homers and 50 RBIs, with a 1.039 OPS in 57 games ... Thibideau hit .323 with 11 doubles, six triples, 14 homers and 49 RBIs in 56 games with a 1.046 OPS.
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OF Jager Toffan (Regina, Sask.) Blinn Buccaneers.
At the Alpine Bank JUCO World Series ...
_ Toffan was hitless and walked in a 7-4 loss to Cochise Apaches in front of 3,883.
_ He singled in a 10-2 win over No. 1-ranked Chattahoochee Valley Pirates before 7,911 fans. He had an infield single in the second,
_ Had two singles and drove in a run in an 11-2 loss to Miami-Dade in front of 8,418 fans. Singled up the middle knocking in a run to cut the Miami-Dade lead to 5-1 and singled leading off the fourth.
_ Singled and stole three bases as Blinn was eliminated with a 10-2 loss to Spartanburg Methodist. He singled through the right side in the sixth to cut the Spartanburg Methodist lead to 8-1.
How they got to Grand Junction ... Blinn won the Region XIV Conference tournament in Lufkin, Tex. as Toffan
_ Had two hits and knocked in a run in a 7-2 win against the Navarro Bulldogs in the opener.
_ Singled in a 6-3 win against Alvin Dophins. He also scored a run in the seventh.
_ Hit a two-run single in an 11-4 win over the San Jacinto Gators. Rains halted play in the fourth inning with Blinn leading 6-3. The Bucs were forced to wait two days to complete the inning and the game. Blinn poured it on and Toffan hit a screaming single to right that scored two making it a 10-3 game.
_ The Buccaneers then lost 12-4 to Alvin forcing a winner-take-all final.
_ Had two hits, including a triple and a single, while driving in a pair of runs to avenge the loss with a 12- victory against Alvin. The Bucs had 17 hits, none was more important than Toffan’s triple in the bottom of the fourth that tied the game 3-3. In the next at-bat an RBI single to left field scored Toffan to give the Bucs a 4-3 lead. It was Blinn’s first trip to the JUCO World Series since 1992 — and the first time under coach Harvey McIntyre Blinn baseball team is headed the NJCAA World Series.
On the season ... for the 35-28-1 Buccaneers ... Toffan hit .283 with six doubles, a triple, three homers and 24 RBIs. He was 14-for-20 stealing bases and had an .720 OPS. He led Blinn in at-bats.