The PeeWee AA Tyees hosted the top ten 13U teams across the Province July 27-30 at Nunn’s Creek Park and showed everyone why they deserved to be in the tournament while they were at it.
The boys opened the weekend with a nearly error-free baseball game against Abbotsford Thursday. Kye Benoche made a leaping line drive catch at second and doubled the runner off. Ethan Vaton made some superb plays at short stop and Breydan Riecker made an amazing over the shoulder catch in foul territory which all got the crowd cheering loud. Wyatt Murray and Owen Lagos did a fine job on the mound for the Tyees and Riecker went two-for-two with a walk and Landon Bowers, Ryan Deagle and Carter Hall all hit home run blasts, earning the Tyees a 14-2 mercy win. Bowers was named MVP.
The Opening Ceremonies and Skills Competition also took place on Thursday evening and drew a large crowd. Lagos, Hall, Bowers and Murray won the Base Running Relay in the Skills Competition.
Friday, the boys faced West Kelowna in the morning. Vaton started on the mound, Lagos relieved and Riecker closed the game out all with some strong pitching. Lagos and Murray both hit home runs, and Riecker, Wyatt Dumont, Bowers, Hall, Vaton and Deagle all hit doubles. The boys were quick on the base paths and many stole home. Braydon Penn made a nice play at third base. Vaton was MVP in the game. The final score was another mercy win for the Tyees by a score of 16-6.
Friday afternoon, the boys faced the Tri-City Reds in their third game. Dumont started on the mound and Penn closed, both doing a nice job. Riecker batted .1000 and scored all four times he came to the plate. Deagle and Lagos demonstrated patience at the plate with three walks each and Gareth MacDonald made a big out in right field. Dumont got the MVP nod. This game was yet another mercy win with a score of 15-5.
The last game of the round robin took place with the other 3-0 team, the North Delta Rays and it was a barn burner. Hall started on the mound and was relieved by Penn, Riecker, Murray and Deagle. The Tyees came out swinging, scoring six runs in their first at bats. Lagos, Bowers, Murray and Hall all hit solo home runs in the game and Benoche, Bowers, Murray, Deagle and Dumont each hit a double. Vaton had a nice single that knocked in two runs. The North Delta squad battled back however and in the end won the game 14-11. Murray was named MVP.
So the Tyees finished second in their pool with a 3-1 record and crossed over to face the No. 1 Newton-Surrey team from the other pool in the semi-final match up on Sunday morning in front of a big crowd. This game was a demonstration of the Tyees talented hitting with Lagos hitting a two run shot, Deagle and Dumont cranking doubles and Riecker and Bowers each getting a couple of nice hits. Murray had a spectacular game on the mound, throwing a complete game in a 13-1 mercy win. Lagos was named MVP.
The Tyees were through to the Finals against the strong Tsawwasen Athletics. Dumont started on the mound, Vaton relieved and Hall closed. The A’s scored two runs in the top of the 1st, but the Tyees responded in the bottom to even the score, with Lagos getting on and then stealing around and Bowers hitting him home and then Murray hit a double that drove Bowers in.
Everything changed in the fourth, however, when the A’s bats came alive. Heading into the 5th inning, the home team found themselves down 11-4.
However, the Tyees would score two in the fifth with nice hits from Penn, MacDonald and Lagos with Penn scoring and then Riecker hit an RBI ground out to knock the second runner in. The A’s did not score in the 6th with fine pitching from Hall and the Tyees launched a comeback during their at bats in the inning that would bring new life to the crowd. Murray hit a single, Deagle walked and then Hall hit a three run shot to put the score at 11-9. Vaton got on and then Benoche hit a nice line drive double to score him. Benoche would eventually score on an A’s error to tie the game at 11 and that is how the 7th inning would end.
The A’s answered in the top of the 7th inning with two more runs of their own, however, and going into the bottom of the inning, things were extremely tense at Nunn’s Creek Park.
With one out, Bowers hit a single and then Murray walked. With two out, Hall came to the plate and, after his three run blast the inning before, the A’s elected to walk him. While doing so Bowers made a gutsy play to steal third, forcing an error while the A’s tried to throw him out allowing him to continue home putting the score at 13-12 for the A’s.
Unfortunately, the Tyees weren’t quite able to pull off the comeback but it was certainly a valiant effort by the team.
They were awarded with the Provincial Silver Medals.
They will now be heading to Burnaby Aug. 4-7 for the Baseball BC Provincials where, this time, they hope to bring home the gold.