By Jim Bialek
ETOBICOKE, ON: The schedule results page will indicate a split in the doubleheader between the defending champion St. Clair Saints (5-1) and the host Humber Hawks (2-2), but the story was the one-hit, complete-game shutout Game 2 win by veteran Steven Hough. Game 1 saw the Saints march away with a solid 7-2 win, and Game 2 was a 6-0 whitewashing by the Hawks. The shutout loss was the first the St. Clair squad had surrendered in their OCAA baseball history.
ST.CLAIR 7 vsHUMBER 2
Errors, missed opportunities and some timely hitting by the visiting Saints led to the undoing of the Hawks in the opener. In what was a tight 3-2 game through four complete, it was an error that opened the door to a five spot put up by St. Clair, thus all but putting the game away. Interestingly enough, it was another error by the Hawks that led to the opening run of the game for the Saints. Humber out-hit St. Clair by a 9-8 margin, and left 11 runners on base, compared to St. Clair's six.
St. Clair ace Kyle Breitner recorded the win, pitching through six complete. Dylan Perego dropped his second of the year, although pitching solid into the fifth. Perego has not been the recipient of much help this year, as Humber was error prone today in this loss, and unable to push a run across in a 1-0 loss to Durham a week ago.
Liam Sutherland and Ken Hanfield were the hitting stars for the Hawks, both registering two hits in the game. They are also responsible for scoring the Hawks two runs. Burke and Dion of the Saints each had two knocks for the winners.
HUMBER6 vsST. CLAIR 0
As mentioned above, Game 2 belonged to Steven Hough, as he was able to accomplish what no other pitcher has done since OCAA Baseball came into being five years ago. But, it did not start out as simply as one might think. Humber committed errors on the first two Saints batters, and the visitors from Windsor eventually loaded the sacks up early. Hough helped himself by snaring a one-hopper heading up the middle, and threw the St. Clair batter out easily. Humber jumped over the St. Clair starter early, scoring three runs in the first. St. Clair could have limited the damage, but a tailor-made double play was misplayed with runners on first and third, with no out. The next big knock came off the bat of former Chicago Cub farmhand Justin Marra, as he doubled deep over the Saints centre fielder to score two in the fourth to put the game out of hand.
Now back to Hough. A hard hit line drive - one hopper a foot to the left of the Hawk shortstop broke up his bid for a no-hitter with two out in the sixth.
In the end, Hough went to 1-0 with the complete-game win, while Chauvin of St. Clair was tagged with the loss. Sutherland was once again the hitting star, as he was on base three times, with two hits and a hit by pitch, and scoring twice. Minnesota native Max Elofson had a perfect day at the plate, chipping in with two walks and a base hit.
Humber will host the Fanshawe Falcons for a doubleheader on Sunday afternoon at Connorvale Park. The first game will start at 1:00 p.m., with the next slated for a 3:30 p.m. first pitch.