Saturday, July 20, 2013

Conant gem gets the cats back in the win column

It seems like Victoria can now boast an Ace on their pitching staff. Yes Ty Provencher will be at the All Star game this Tuesday, but it's leftie Bryan Conant who's become king of the hill.

Saturday night Conant the Barbarian mastered the Wenatchee AppleSox through 7 innings, giving up only a single run on 6 hits on route to his 4th win of the Season. Ryan Keller threw the last 2 innings, also giving up a run in a shaky 9th inning, but recording his second save.

It didn't look good early though... There seems to be a mystique around the first inning in games at RAP this year, as the Cats consistently get jumped on and find themselves in a first inning hole. It looked like deja vu all over again after a leadoff single by Ryan Barr and Grant Palmer's double left Sox at 2nd and 3rd with no outs. Conant took matters into his own hands then, snagging a come-backer to the mound that froze Barr at third, striking out cleanup hitter Andre Real (no relation to Alex) on a 3-2 pitch, and then inducing a fly ball to right off the bat of Stockton Taylor. Crisis averted, Conant left with no runs on the board.

Wenatchee went up in the 4th with some good old fashioned small ball. The Sox put together a couple of singles and a walk to take a 1-0 lead - all with 2 outs, before Conant struck out Barr to keep the game close.

Mr. Clutch, David Schuknecht
At the dish, the Cats had nothing going early, as AppleSox starter C.J. Burdick lived up to his billing and was mowing them down, giving up only two of singles through  four. Dylan LaVelle led off the 5th with a double, and David Schuknecht smacked a clutch 2-out single to tie the game. Victoria scored again in the 6th on a walk to Alex Real, and a single by Chris Lewis - aided by an errant throw trying to gun Real out going to third went wide, allowing Real to score an unearned run.In a repeat of the fifth inning, LaVelle led off the 7th with his second double of the game, Austin Russell followed with a single that chased Burdick, before Schuknecht hit a sac fly to center to put the cats up 3-1.

Wenatchee sat their All-Star contingent Saturday - and that's probably a good thing. Pinch-hitting in the 9th, Connor Spencer was walked, before Brett Stephens delivered him home with a double. Keller gave up another walk before finally getting Brock Slavin to line out to Brett Urabe to win the game on a nice leaping catch. A bit of a cardiac-inducing save to say the least, but a save none the less!

Good baseball so far in this series. Victoria pitching is mastering the AppleSox so far, holding this very good offensive team to 10 hits over two games. Some clutch hitting has pulled them even in the series. Also impressive is the tightening up defensively, with only a single error being recorded this weekend. Sunday should be another excellent pitching duel as Victoria send All Star Ty Provencher up against the 4-1 Davis Engle. One thing is for sure, it will be a beautiful day for ball!


  1. Nice to see the players goin hard, guys grinding out the win and the positive write ups. Hopefully we can keep the trend going today!!! Go Harbourcats!!

  2. Great to see the Harbourcats bats come alive early on today to keep us in the game. That's the way baseball should be played. Lets keep the bats hot and the winning streak alive! Go Harbourcats!