Monarchs survive late rally by Aces, win in extra innings

Chris Quigley
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Veitch Physiotherapy Aces’ Steve White makes a diving play to get back to first, beating the throw to West Side Monarchs’ Brad Brewer, during senior baseball play at Jubilee Field Tuesday.
— Star photo by Geraldine Brophy

The Veitch’s Physiotherapy Aces rallied Tuesday night at Jubilee Field, but the West Side Monarchs survived.

Leading 3-1 and heading into the final inning, the Monarchs appeared to have the Corner Brook Molson Senior Baseball League contest in hand. Then singles from Aces’ Grant Vincent and Mark Lombard cashed in Steve White and Rob George, respectively, to even the game and eventually send it to extra innings.

In the bottom of the eighth, the score tied 3-3, a single from Brad Brewer sent Jeff Gillam home to salvage the victory for the gold and black.

Perennial slow starters, the Monarchs securing that first win of the season was big, said winning pitcher Adam Warren, even if it came in just their second game.

“It’s nice to get a win,” he said. “We played well against the Hawks and lost a close game (6-4 in the season opener on June 1).

“We’ve got a good team here,” he added. “I think we should be right in the mix.”

Warren allowed 10 hits over his eight innings of work, giving up three runs — two earned — and three walks, while striking out eight.

Steve Sheppard led the Monarchs with a home run in a 1-for-2 outing that also saw him walked and hit by a pitch. He drove in two runs. Jeff Gillam was 2-for-3 with a run scored. He was walked once.

His counterpart, Greg Whelan, gave up six hits on the night, allowing four runs and five walks. He struck out six.

Vincent and Brian Bennett were the top batters for the losing side, each going 2-for-4. Vincent had an RBI, while Bennett scored a run.

Sheppard’s solo home run in the bottom of the second kickstarted the scoring, before Aces’ Bennett made it home in the top of the third on a passed ball to tie the contest at 1-1.

Warren was walked with the bases loaded in the bottom of the third inning, which scored Rob Park. Sheppard was then hit by a pitch, allowing Mark Armstrong to cross the plate and give his side the 3-1 edge.

Three scoreless innings followed, until the Aces made their move in the top of the seventh. While, at the time, it was an unfortunate situation for his Monarchs, Warren said he wasn’t surprised.

“They’ve got a good lineup ... one through nine they can all hit the ball,” he said. “So you know they’re never out of a game.

“But we were able to come back, get some timely hits and pull together the win.”

Aces’ Bennett gave credit to the defence of the Monarchs for making some big plays to keep them off the scoreboard much of the evening.

“They played well in the field,” he said. “They didn’t boot the ball around.”

That being said, he felt he and his teammates weren’t being selective enough at the plate, which played at part in their demise.

“We were swinging at a lot of balls and letting good ones go,” he said. “That’s basically it.”

With a 2-0 record, the Supplement Shack Junior Barons are the early league-leaders, followed by the Veitch’s Ultramar Hawks at 1-0. The Monarchs improved to 1-1 so far, with the Aces behind them at 1-2. The expansion Curling Marlins are currently 0-1.

The Boxscore

Teams          1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     R     H     E

Aces             0     0     1     0     0     0     2     0     3     10     1

Monarchs     0     1     2     0     0     0     0     1     4     6     1

Organizations: Monarchs, Senior Baseball League

Geographic location: Rob Park

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