Canada Games: Manitoba to meet Saskatchewan for gold

 Manitoba will play Saskatchewan in the gold medal game at the Canada Games in Winnipeg on Friday. Photo Credit: Baseball Canada

Manitoba will play Saskatchewan in the gold medal game at the Canada Games in Winnipeg on Friday. Photo Credit: Baseball Canada

By Adam Morissette

Baseball Canada

Please see below for information from Day 5 of the Canada Games Baseball Competition in Winnipeg, Manitoba:

WINNIPEG - It will be an all-prairie battle for Canada Games gold after host Manitoba and Saskatchewan earned semi-final wins to qualify for the championship contest on Friday. Manitoba used the home field advantage and came away with a 1-0 win over Alberta while Saskatchewan hit their way to a 7-0 win over Ontario. Neither province has a Canada Games baseball gold medal on their resumes although Manitoba has three silver medals to their credit ('73, '77, '85) while Saskatchewan has one ('89).

SF #1: Manitoba 1 Alberta 0 - A two-out, pinch-hit double off the bat of Tanner Boyle in the bottom of the sixth gave Manitoba a 1-0 lead and they held on the beat Alberta and advance to the Canada Games baseball gold medal game for the first time since 1985. Over 2,000 celebrated at Shaw Park as reliever Jordan Lussier induced a fly out from Alberta's Matthew Coutney with the bases load to end the game. Manitoba's Noah Geekie and Alberta's Branden Woods carried shutouts into the sixth before both clubs got into their bullpens. After Lussier failed to execute a squeeze bunt that saw Jared McCorrister tagged out at home, he advanced to first on a hit by pitch before moving to second on a wild pitch, and later scored on Boyle's double.

SF#2: Saskatchewan 7 Ontario 0 - Saskatchewan had nine hits including five in a four-run third inning to come away with a 7-0 win over Ontario to book their ticket to the Canada Games gold medal game. Saskatchewan will be playing in their third consecutive championship contest at the 17U level after winning the Baseball Canada Cup in 2016 while settling for silver in 2015. Saskatchewan starter Connor Sparks tossed five shutout innings scattering four hits and three walks while striking out three batters. Ryan Olchoway came on in relief and threw two perfect frames with one strikeout to preserve the shutout. Sparks was also a factor at the plate as his 2-for-3 game at the plate included a triple and RBI while Olchoway and Tyler McWillie drove in two runs each.

QF: Ontario 3 BC 1 - Zach McQuaid went the distance and struck out eight to lead Ontario to a 3-1 win over BC to advance to the semi finals. McQuaid scattered five hits including a solo home run to Jayden Knight in the fifth but that was his only blemish in a winning effort. Ontario benefitted from a bases-loaded hit by pitch by BC starter Declan Dutton in the third before Noah London drove in a pair with two out to put Ontario in front, 3-0. Dutton pitched six innings and fanned four but took the loss for BC.

In placement games, New Brunswick defeated Newfoundland & Labrador, 7-6 in eight innings, to claim ninth place while it took extras for Nova Scotia to get by PEI, 6-5, in the seventh place game.

Rosters: http://old.baseball.ca/games/index_eng.cfm?content=teams 

Schedule/Results: http://old.baseball.ca/games/index_eng.cfm?content=schedule 

Stats: http://baseballcanada.bbstats.pointstreak.com/stats.html?leagueid=110&seasonid=30920

Live Stream: http://sportscanada.tv/canadagames/2017baseball

Adam Morissette

Adam Morissette was born and raised in Ottawa, Ont. where sports were always a big part of his life whether it be baseball, hockey or football, including playing two seasons as centre for coach Pat Sheahan with the Queen's University Golden Gaels in Kingston -- Canada's first capital. Morissette has always have been passionate about baseball and has fond memories of attending Montreal Expos games with his father, Mike, and listening to his recollection of watching baseball in Montreal at Jarry Park and stories about Gary Carter, Rusty Staub and Steve Rodgers. Morissette could often be found in a near empty Lynx Stadium watching Joe Siddall, Bert Heffernan, Curtis Pride and Jamie Carroll soaking in a beautiful summer night at the ballpark. He was a member of the provincial championship Orleans Red Sox Little League teams also played with the Ottawa White Sox for the late Lyle Anderson and Todd Burke in OBA Midget and American Legion play and the Capital City Crushers (NCBL), primarily as a catcher. Has also spent time coaching Little League in Orleans and South Ottawa. He wanted to turn his passion into a career and enrolled in Sport Business Management at Algonquin College in Ottawa in 2007. After working for the Ottawa 67's OHL team as the Ticket Coordinator, Morissette jumped at the opportunity to become the Media and Public Relations Coordinator with Baseball Canada in 2010. He loves watching and reading about pro, college or amateur baseball and is a long-time subscriber to Baseball America. Morissette is thrilled about the idea of writing about baseball and is interested in covering any story that his car -- and time -- will allow him to cover.