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Barons in command

The Corner Brook Barons' Mike Brake safely reaches first base as St. John's Capitals first baseman Corey Ewart is unable to make scoop the ball during Game 3 of the Baseball Newfoundland and Labrador provincial senior A men's championship Sunday at St. Pat's Ball Park in St. John's. Brake advanced to second on the errant throw. The Barons take a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series back to Corner Brook next weekend.
The Corner Brook Barons' Mike Brake safely reaches first base as St. John's Capitals first baseman Corey Ewart is unable to make scoop the ball during Game 3 of the Baseball Newfoundland and Labrador provincial senior A men's championship Sunday at St. Pat's Ball Park in St. John's. Brake advanced to second on the errant throw. The Barons take a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series back to Corner Brook next weekend.

The Corner Brook Barons accomplished just what they’d hope to do on the weekend, coming away from St. Pat’s Ball Park with a 2-1 lead on the St. John’s Capitals.

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The all-Newfoundland provincial senior baseball championship, a best-of-seven affair, now switches the west coast next weekend, with the Barons in good shape to wrestle the title away from St. John’s on their own turf, venerable Jubilee Field.

“When you take two games from the Caps on the first weekend at St. Pat’s,” said Corner Brook player-coach Darren Colbourne, “you have to see it as a huge accomplishment.”

The Barons took advantage of a crucial St. John’s error in the fifth inning Sunday to plate three runs and run away with a 4-1 win. The teams split two games on a soggy Saturday, with St. John’s winning the first game 3-0 before Corner Brook rebounded for a 1-0 win in the nightcap.

On a glorious Sunday afternoon, the Barons had the bases loaded with two out in the fifth, and Dave Parsons at the plate. Parsons, normally a Caps stalwart who toils in the St. John’s league with Holy Cross, is suiting up for the Barons in the provincials as a pickup after playing for his hometown Gander squad in the senior B championship.

Anyway, Parsons lined a shot to left-centrefield and Caps outfielder Bernie Madden did a good job tracking down the ball. Madden made the catch on the warning track, but dropped the ball for an error, allowing three Barons to score.

“For Bernie,” Colbourne said, “that should be a can of corn. I don’t know what happened. But that is and will be the tale of the series. It will come down to pitching and defence.”

Pitching was especially strong for the Barons Saturday night, as Michael Tavenor threw a gem, scattering three hits and a walk over seven innings, while striking out five.

That was a big win for the Barons, especially after getting shut out in the opening game.

Sunday, Brian Bennett kept the Caps at bay for five innings, allowing one run on five hits and six walks. He struck out one. Ryan Harnett (2IP, 0R, 4H, 1W, 1K) came on for the final two innings.

“Brian’s got a good change and a nifty, little curve,” Colbourne said. “He was effectively out of the strike zone, keeping their hitters off balance.

“Whereas Saturday, Michael was like, ‘Here it is. Hit it.’ It was a good mix between the two.”

Greg Barry (5.1 IP, 4R, 7H, 0W, 0K) was tagged with the loss Sunday. Sean Janes (1.2IP, 0R, 1H, 0W, 0K) finished up.

Grant Vincent led the Barons with two hits. Catcher Scott Stockley had a big game for St. John’s, with three hits in four trips to the plate.

Under the lights Saturday night, Corner Brook scored the game’s only run in the first inning in a well-played duel between two old rivals. Jay Warford walked, was sacrificed to second by A.J. Whiffen and raced home on a Parsons single.

Bob Kent (4IP, 1R, 4H, 5W, 0K) took the loss, with relief help from Dan Connors (3IP, 0R, 0H, 2W, 2K). The ageless Colbourne had two hits in three trips to the plate, while Parsons and another veteran Corner Brook infielder, Mike O’Neill, had the other base hits for the Barons.

Stockley, Dave Penney and Dave Buckingham were able to solve Tavenor at the plate.

As for the opening game, the Caps scored twice in the second inning and once in the third in the victory. Scott Goosney (7IP, 0R, 3H, 0W, 3K) registered the win over Whiffen (6IP, 3R, 5H, 0W, 3K).

Gerald Butt led the Caps with two hits. Parsons, Warford and Steve Hynes had the Corner Brook hits.

The series resumes next Saturday with Game 4 set for 2 p.m.

rshort@thetelegram.com

Related stories

Barons happy to have Brake’s big bat full-time

Familiar foe, different look for Capitals

The all-Newfoundland provincial senior baseball championship, a best-of-seven affair, now switches the west coast next weekend, with the Barons in good shape to wrestle the title away from St. John’s on their own turf, venerable Jubilee Field.

“When you take two games from the Caps on the first weekend at St. Pat’s,” said Corner Brook player-coach Darren Colbourne, “you have to see it as a huge accomplishment.”

The Barons took advantage of a crucial St. John’s error in the fifth inning Sunday to plate three runs and run away with a 4-1 win. The teams split two games on a soggy Saturday, with St. John’s winning the first game 3-0 before Corner Brook rebounded for a 1-0 win in the nightcap.

On a glorious Sunday afternoon, the Barons had the bases loaded with two out in the fifth, and Dave Parsons at the plate. Parsons, normally a Caps stalwart who toils in the St. John’s league with Holy Cross, is suiting up for the Barons in the provincials as a pickup after playing for his hometown Gander squad in the senior B championship.

Anyway, Parsons lined a shot to left-centrefield and Caps outfielder Bernie Madden did a good job tracking down the ball. Madden made the catch on the warning track, but dropped the ball for an error, allowing three Barons to score.

“For Bernie,” Colbourne said, “that should be a can of corn. I don’t know what happened. But that is and will be the tale of the series. It will come down to pitching and defence.”

Pitching was especially strong for the Barons Saturday night, as Michael Tavenor threw a gem, scattering three hits and a walk over seven innings, while striking out five.

That was a big win for the Barons, especially after getting shut out in the opening game.

Sunday, Brian Bennett kept the Caps at bay for five innings, allowing one run on five hits and six walks. He struck out one. Ryan Harnett (2IP, 0R, 4H, 1W, 1K) came on for the final two innings.

“Brian’s got a good change and a nifty, little curve,” Colbourne said. “He was effectively out of the strike zone, keeping their hitters off balance.

“Whereas Saturday, Michael was like, ‘Here it is. Hit it.’ It was a good mix between the two.”

Greg Barry (5.1 IP, 4R, 7H, 0W, 0K) was tagged with the loss Sunday. Sean Janes (1.2IP, 0R, 1H, 0W, 0K) finished up.

Grant Vincent led the Barons with two hits. Catcher Scott Stockley had a big game for St. John’s, with three hits in four trips to the plate.

Under the lights Saturday night, Corner Brook scored the game’s only run in the first inning in a well-played duel between two old rivals. Jay Warford walked, was sacrificed to second by A.J. Whiffen and raced home on a Parsons single.

Bob Kent (4IP, 1R, 4H, 5W, 0K) took the loss, with relief help from Dan Connors (3IP, 0R, 0H, 2W, 2K). The ageless Colbourne had two hits in three trips to the plate, while Parsons and another veteran Corner Brook infielder, Mike O’Neill, had the other base hits for the Barons.

Stockley, Dave Penney and Dave Buckingham were able to solve Tavenor at the plate.

As for the opening game, the Caps scored twice in the second inning and once in the third in the victory. Scott Goosney (7IP, 0R, 3H, 0W, 3K) registered the win over Whiffen (6IP, 3R, 5H, 0W, 3K).

Gerald Butt led the Caps with two hits. Parsons, Warford and Steve Hynes had the Corner Brook hits.

The series resumes next Saturday with Game 4 set for 2 p.m.

rshort@thetelegram.com

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