The local squad fell behind 8-1 through two innings against their opponents from Mirabel Diamond Academy, but chipped their way back into the contest with runs in each of the next three frames to pull within one 8-7 heading into the final inning. There, a pair of home runs – giving Quebec three on the day – saw Mirabel pull away and eventually take a 14-7 victory.
So it might have been a loss, but at the same time a solid enough performance that they put a heck of a scare into a team that’s plenty familiar with national championship-level play.
“Yes we did, I’ll tell you that for sure,” said All-Stars head coach Tony Dreger. “I know that team is a solid team, this is year five they’ve been here now and when we battled back from 8-1 that was an eye-opener for those guys, which is good… I’m super excited, I’m pumped for the kids, they played awesome and we’re super proud of them.”
Noah Thul led the All-Stars offence with a 4-for-4 day, scoring a run and knocking in a pair. Max Simmons had a pair of hits in three trips to the plate, crossing the plate twice, while Trehvan McMorris went 2-for-3 with an RBI.
Alexandre Laurence had an outstanding game at the plate for Quebec with a 5-for-5 game that saw him hit a first-inning home run and three doubles, capping the day with three runs scored and three RBI.
Javin Boynton got the start on the mound for Moose Jaw and was bit by the error bug – of the eight runs he allowed in his two innings of work, only one was earned, with seven coming in the second inning. He ended up surrendering five hits on three walks while striking out six.
“That’s Little League baseball, 11- and 12-year-old baseball,” Dreger said. “One error gets you and then you lose a couple runs and that’s just the reality of it. But it bounces our way, too, where we get a hit and they boot the ball and we score two or something like that. Just the way the game goes, but I know that our boys didn’t give up, they fought their way through it all.”
Defensively, once the All-Stars settled down in the field they were solid. Nathan Pisio had an especially solid game behind the plate, gunning down steal attempt at second in the fifth inning to go along with a handful of tag outs at the plate as Moose Jaw made their comeback.
“It was just getting the jitters out, getting the nerves out and everybody realizing that ‘hey, you know what, these kids are the same age as us, they’re ball players too, no different’,” Dreger said. “So I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s game already.”
The All-Stars are back in action Friday when they host the host Ancaster Diamondbacks. Game time is 3 p.m. Moose Jaw time, with the contest broadcast on CBC.ca.
The remainder of their schedule is as follows;
Aug. 2 – Ancaster, 3 p.m.
Aug. 3 – Atlantic (Glace Bay), 12 p.m.
Aug. 4 – Rest day
Aug. 5 – Alberta (Calgary West), 9 a.m.
Aug. 6 – British Columbia (Coquitlam), 7 a.m.
Aug. 7 – Ontario (Ottawa West), 10 a.m.
Aug. 8 – Rain date, tiebreakers
Aug. 9 – Semifinals, 8 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Aug. 10 – Championship final, 8 a.m.