Edmonton Prospects Snap Medicine Hat Mavericks 10-Game Win Streak
By Len Nunes
One of the big stories of this young WMBL season has been the Medicine Hat Mavericks 10-game win streak after they dropped their first two games of the season. Monday night was the Prospects final game of a 4-game home stand in which the team was looking to finish at .500. The Las Vegas odds makers would have put the Mavericks as favourites. An exuberant 1,201 RE/MAX Field faithful watched as the Prospects reminded everyone that they are the 2-time WMBL Championship Finalists as they gutted out an 8-5 win.
With 2-out in the bottom of the first, the offence began to click. Daylen Calicdan, his hit streak now at 6 games, singled and stole 2nd base. Nick Spillman collected his 11th RBI of the season with a single to left field. Spillman (.404) and Calicdan (.396) sit 5th and 6th in the league in batting average.
In the bottom of the 2nd inning the Prospects made the score 2-0. Matt Coutney's lead-off triple was quickly cashed in by a Jake MacDonald sacrifice fly.
Prospects starting pitcher Dylan Emmons cruised through the first two innings only allowing a single. Back-to-back doubles to lead off the third inning put the Mavericks on the board. A 1-out RBI single tied the game. The Mavericks took a 3-2 lead in the top of the 4th after Emmons was able to get the lead-off batter to fly out.
The Prospects took the lead back in the bottom of the 4th inning. Percy Liu, returning to the Prospects line-up after limping out of Sunday's match-up, hit a 2-out, 2-RBI double to make the score 4-3.
The Mavericks tied the game in the top of the 5th when a lead-off double ended up with the batter on 3rd base after an error in the outfield. Emmons held him on base for a batter but would cede the unearned run making the game 4-4. Emmons' final line was 5 IP, 4 runs against (3 earned), on 7 hits with 1 walk and 2 strikeouts.
Josh Sieglitz, making his second appearance of the season, took over on the Prospects mound. After pitching 3 1/3 scoreless innings versus the Lethbridge Bulls on Saturday, Sieglitz put in another solid three innings on Monday before running into trouble in the top of the 9th. Through innings 6 to 8, Sieglitz only allowed two baserunners and both were via the walk.
The Prospects offence gave Sieglitz some breathing room in the bottom of the 6th inning breaking open the tied baseball game scoring three runs. Jake MacDonald led off the inning with a single and was joined on base by AJ Nitzschke when he was hit by a pitch. MacDonald scored when the Mavericks defence committed one of their 3 errors on the evening. Liu and Zane Takhar would hit back-to-back sacrifice flies to give the home team a 7-4 lead.
The lead would be extended to 8-4 in the bottom of the 8th inning. Gio Villaneuva got on base with a lead-off single. Takhar, who collected 4 walks during Sunday's game, collected his second sacrifice fly of the night. One wonders what Takhar will collect during Wednesday's game.
Michael Gahan entered the game in the top of the 9th with the bases loaded and nobody out. Louie Canjura was able to push a run across the plate for his Mavericks but it was via a double-play. Gahan then induced a Zack Gray groundball to end the game. The 8-5 win moves the Prospects back to .500!
PLAYER OF THE GAME
One thinks about giving the honours to Daylen Calicdan who went 3-5 at the plate. One ponders placing the honours upon Josh Sieglitz making him for 2-2 in games played and POTG nominations. The honour will go to Percy Liu and his big 2-out, 2-RBI double followed by what became the game winning RBI with his 6th inning sacrifice fly.
The Prospect’s are playing 6 road games in a row as they head off to Saskatchewan. The first game is Wednesday, June 20 in Swift Current. The last road game of this trip is Monday, June 25 in Swift Current.
NEXT HOME GAME
Wednesday June 27 vs Okotoks Dawgs
If you have not got your Canada Day tickets for the 7PM game versus the Brooks Bombers, which ensures you the best viewing place in Edmonton for the fireworks, consider this your invitation to do so. Tickets are going fast. Last year was a sell-out. Buy online at PROSPECTS TICKETS.