Blaze one win away from title
A four-game sweep over the visiting Okanagan Athletics has the Langley Blaze one victory away from clinching their fourth consecutive B.C. Premier Baseball League pennant.
The U18 Blaze (34-11) leads the league by 3.5 games over the Nanaimo Pirates (29-13) and they need just one win in their final three games, beginning tonight (Tuesday) at Mackie Park against the North Delta Blue Jays.
Over the weekend, the Blaze won 6-5 and 8-3 on Saturday with a pair of come-from-behind victores and then posted a pair of shutout victories on Sunday, 2-0 and 3-0. All four games were at McLeod Park.
Thirteen of the team's 34 victories have been by shutout as the Blaze's pitching staff lowered their earned run average to 1.46.
Blaze 6 Athletics 5
In the weekend opener, Langley led 4-0 after four innings, but Okanagan struck for five runs in the top of the fifth. However, the lead was short-lived, as the next inning, the Blaze tied things up and then won in walk-off fashion thanks to Mason Cratty's double, which scored Adrian Bullaoit.
Mike Krische had two RBIs, while Greg Rogers drove in one run while also going 3-for-4.
Bill Germaine and Tyler Barlow also had RBIs.
Aaron Dick picked up the win, going two and one-thirds innings. He allowed just two hits and no runs.
Blaze 8 Athletics 3
Okanagan again used a big fifth inning for all of their runs, scoring three times in the top of the fifth to lead 3-2. But again, the lead did not last as the Blaze scored twice in the bottom of the fifth and then tacked on four more runs in the sixth to win 8-3.
Jeremy Filipek and Germaine each drove in three runs, while Ricky Bertand had one RBI.
Krische scored three times.
Jon Bauer picked up the win, allowing three runs over five innings.
Blaze 2 Athletics 0
Karl Malacek tossed a complete game two-hit shutout, while Barlow and Zach Mihic both drove in runs with second-inning RBI singles.
Blaze 3 Athletics 0
Langley received another complete game gem, this time from Devon Stewart, who allowed two hits over seven innings. He also struck out eight Okanagan batters.
Germaine drove in both runs with a two-run single in the first inning.
Following Tuesday's game, Langley visits Victoria on July 19 for a doubleheader against
the Eagles to wrap up the regular season.