ETOBICOKE, ON: The Humber Hawks men's baseball team (15-3, 1st place) matched their best regular season win total of 15 wins on Friday night at Connorvale Park by way of a pair of victories over the visiting George Brown Huskies (2-16, 6th place). Humber, by way of the sweep, clinched the regular season title, a perch that has only been occupied by the five-time champion St. Clair Saints. With this result, Humber will enter the 2018 OCAA Provincial Championship as the number one seed.
Humber Hawks 7 vs George Brown Huskies 4
Brendan Lyons toed the bump for game one, and was touched up early in the first, but was able to battle back to blank the Huskies in their first at-bat. Liam Sutherland, the 2017 OCAA Player of the Year, stayed hot and opened up the bottom of the first with a line drive single up the middle. H eventually scored on a sacrifice fly by Keegan Murphy, but the big hit of the inning was a three-run blast over the right field fence by veteran Andrew Thomson.
George Brown broke through in the third, as they manufactured a run by way of a lead-off walk, a sac bunt and an eventual single. Through three, the score stood at 4-1 for the hometown Hawks.
The Huskies, although surrendering a run in the fourth, made things easier on themselves by running down a number of long and hard hit balls.
It was George Brown who rallied in the sixth, and with back–to-back hits and a fly ball, had runners on second and third with just a single out. A huge strikeout became the second out in the inning, but a two-run single followed right after the strikeout to score two and make the game 5-3 for the Hawks after five and a half innings.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Hawks were aided by a lead-off walk and two wild pitches that put Brandon Costa on third with no out. Cameron Wilcox pinch hit for Ty Martin and laced a single to score Costa and extend Humber's lead to three runs.
The wildness continued for the Huskies pitcher, as a third wild pitch put Wilcox in scoring position. Stephen Narhabeki pinch ran for Wilcox, and scored when Sutherland calmly stepped in the batter's box and rapped out his third hit of the game and second RBI.
After six complete, it was 7-3, Hawks favour.
George Brown continued to fight and drew to within 7-4 before Lyons sixth strikeout ended the game.
Brendan Lyons finished up the night with the win, by way of a three-run, 7 hit effort, with all seven hits coming from the top three hitters in the Huskies line-up. David De Cassen took the loss for the Huskies, with his line indicating nine hits, four walks and all seven runs earned.
Liam Sutherland, led Humber on the night with 3 hits, while Thomson led both teams in RBI's, with three. George Brown's Anthony Buonaiuto and Jake Benjamin matched Humber's Sutherland with three safeties each.
Sutherland was selected as the Hawk Nation Player of the Game.
Humber Hawks 8 vs George Brown Huskies 1
Humber struck early, pushing across an unearned run in the first, as Liam Sutherland crossed the plate courtesy of Brendan Lyons. Of note here, is that Lyons, the league's top hitter, pitched Humber to a complete game win just 30 minutes earlier.
George Brown continued to hit the ball and threaten to score, but after surrendering two hits, Hawk starter Steven Hough settled in to leave the Huskies scoreless after their first two at-bats. A highlight reel catch on a bunt attempt by Hawks catcher Justin Marra aided Hough's cause.
In Humber's half of the second, it was Brandon Costa rapping out a one-out single, and advancing to second on yet another Huskie wild pitch. Costa scored on a bad hop single past the third baseman by Jared Gonsalves.
Sutherland had the Hawks third straight hit of the inning, and then he and Gonslaves scored on the Hawks fourth straight safety, a gap-double by Justin Marra. At the end of two complete, the scoreboard read 4-0 in favour of the Hawks.
Hough gave up an early walk in the third but rolled to record three straight outs to hold the Hawks lead intact at 4-0.
An array of mistakes helped plate the Hawks fifth run of the night, as Keegan Murphy gained first on an error. He then stole second and came all the way home on two more wild pitches.
Despite a leadoff double by Cameron Wilcox, the Hawks were unable to score, and held on to the 5-0 lead through 4 innings.
George Brown pushed across a run in the fifth and with runners on the corners with a single out, looked like they would do more damage. But, a key strikeout by Steven Hough was followed by a ground out.
The fifth for the Hawks seemed to be over early as the Huskies recorded two quick outs, but a single by Brandon Costa was followed by a walk to Jared Gonsalves. Liam Sutherland stepped up and drilled a triple to plate two. Cameron Wilcox was next up and got hit number two on the night to score Sutherland.
A tight game now became a lot more relaxed for Humber, as they led 8-1, after five.
Hough's night came to an end after he set down the Huskies in the sixth, and was credited with the win. Matt Stoddart came on in relief in a non-save situation to close out the game. George Brown's Jack Middleton was tagged with the loss.
Game stats were not available at press time.