Balderas powers Dawgs in Canada Day win

 RHP Anthony Balderas tossed a gem against Swift Current. Photos:: Amanda Fewer 

RHP Anthony Balderas tossed a gem against Swift Current. Photos:: Amanda Fewer 

Saturday July 01, 2017

Dawgs light up the scoreboard on Canada Day

By Dustin Saracini
OKOTOKS, Alta. - Rain couldn’t dampen the spirits of the fans on Canada Day, who stuck around Seaman Stadium following a lengthy delay to watch their (16-8) Okotoks Dawgs win their fourth straight in tremendous fashion.

In just a seven inning game -- with the final frames being called due to lightning strikes -- the red and white plated nine in a 9-1 contest before a hearty crowd of 5,300.

Anthony Balderas went seven innings in the blowout, throwing an absolute gem. The Lewis-Clark product struck out eight while limiting the (14-9) Swift Current 57’s to four hits. At one point, Balderas retired 11 straight batters.

Offensively, the top of the order in Greg Cullen (Niagara University), Jayse McLean (North Dakota State University) and Matt Lloyd (Okotoks, Alta. - Indiana University) combined for six hits and six RBIs.

They started in the third, plating four runs. With two-on, Cullen ripped a double down the right field line to hand Okotoks an early 1-0 lead. The damage was done a batter later, as McLean barrelled the first pitch he saw over the wall in centrefield, scoring three and extending the Dawgs lead to 4-0. The three-run shot was his second blast in his last three games and fifth of the season. 

Okotoks didn’t take their foot off the gas pedal in the fifth. With the bases loaded in a two-out situation, the Dawgs worked back-to-back singles to right field from Zach Hanna (Iowa Western) and Brendan Rose (UBC - Calgary, Alta.) to push their lead to seven. 

With their next cracks at the plate, Cullen continued to swing a hot bat, scorching a two-run double to the left-centre gap, giving the Dawgs a 9-0 lead. With the base-knock, Cullen recorded his seventh multi-hit game.

The Dawgs look for the two-game sweep tomorrow in a Sunday matinee.

First pitch flies at 2:05pm.

Anthony Balderas: 7 IP 6 H 1 ER 8 SO

Jayse McLean (R): 2-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, HR, .293 AVG

WP: Anthony Balderas (2-1) LP: Matt Michalski (2-1).