The Campbell River Midget AA Tyees snared silver medals in the recent provincial championships following a narrow 2-1 loss to Ridge Meadows in the championship final.
Pitching and defence set the tone for the Tyees, who allowed only three runs in their first 24 innings. In the final, pitchers Fraser Stewart and Drew Savery combined to blank Ridge Meadows after a first-inning walk and home run staked the Royals to an early 2-0 lead.
Ridge Meadows matched the Tyees with stellar pitching and defence until Campbell River broke through for a run in the seventh and final inning, but the Tyees rally fell short.
Stewart pitched a gem as Campbell River opened the tournament with a 6-0 win over the Surrey Cardinals. Devon McLean had 3 RBIs to pace the offence and Savery came in for the save.
In game two, the Tyees ran into a hot Vancouver Yankees pitcher as they lost a tight defensive game, 2-1. Braxten Barnes and Chris Beech split the pitching duties, spreading four hits over seven innings. Even in the loss, though the Tyees’ solid defensive showing would come back to pay off later, in the tiebreaker to determine the medal-round lineups.
The Tyee bats came alive in an 18-1 romp over Richmond in the third game. Jared Baker had a strong night at the plate with 3 RBIs; Owen Boyd went 5-for-5; and Tyson Dumont, Braxten Barnes and Chris Beech all went 4-for-5 in the win. Savery, Dumont and Ryan Cessford combined to two-hit the Chuckers.
That win, combined with the low runs-against, propelled the Tyees into the provincial semifinals against the always-potent Prince George Knights.
After a nip-and-tuck start, the Tyees broke the game open in the fourth inning and rolled to a convincing 13-6 win. Mike Sampson continued his great work behind the plate, catching Barnes’ solid pitching performance.
Sampson was also very savvy at the plate, drawing four walks and scoring three times, and Colin Walley had a great day going 3-for-4 and scoring twice. The tight game was broken wide open in the fourth inning as Cessford went 3-for-4 with 4 RBIs.
That vaulted the Tyees into the final against Ridge Meadows, a tremendous defensive battle with numerous outstanding catches and double plays. The Tyees had runners in scoring position three different times but couldn’t cash in as they were stymied by long foul balls and tremendous outfield defense by the Royals.
“I would like to thank the great parent group and families for a great run,” coach Stewart Dumont said. “And we couldn’t have asked for a more committed groups of ballplayers that did themselves proud.”
The midgets played this summer without a league on Vancouver Island. Aside from travelling for outside tournament play, the team managed to get several exhibition games thanks to the Seymour Services Rockies men’s team.