ETOBICOKE, ON: The Humber Hawks secured their seventh win in their last eight games by way of a split with the once invincible St. Clair Saints. The visiting Saints, playing their fifth and sixth games in the last four days, won the first by way of a 2-1 pitcher's duel, while game two ended up with the Hawks holding on for a 6-5 win.
St. Clair saw their 41 game winning streak stopped on Thursday by Fanshawe, and then were dumped on Saturday by Durham. The three losses in the last four days matches the total loss total for the Saints in their history.
In game one, it was St. Clair's Shane Courtney that outdueled the Hawks Steven Hough. The two battled through and pitched complete games, with either surrendering a single base on balls. Humber opened the scoring by way of a lead-off double from the red-hot Andrew Thomson, a sacrifice bunt, and a groundout by catcher Blake Kauer.
The Saints pushed one across in the third to tie it, and another in the fourth to take the lead. It was St. Clair's catcher Cunningham that turned on a 1-2 pitch to single in the tie breaking run. Courtney was efficient, not allowing a base runner after a controversial double play turned by the Saints.
The second game came, and it became quickly obvious that the pitching rich Saints had to dig deep, given the amount of innings played by the team over the past four days. Although Humber gave up the first run, they pounced on the Saints in the second by scoring three and leaving the bases loaded.
St. Clair responded, roughing up Hawk freshman sensation Rory Pollard for a couple of runs, and the game sat at three, after three.
Humber came to Pollard's aid in the very next inning, scoring three and leaving the bases loaded again. Third sacker Matt Stoddart had a key two-out, two-run single to key the uprising.
Pollard got into trouble the very next inning, but Blake Weston came in with runners on first and third with none out. He got out of the inning, while only surrendering a single run.
Although the Saints pecked away, Weston held them at bay. The seventh saw Weston throw his best frame of the game, putting down the Saints in order for the win.
A short melee took place as the game ended. Saints star Cunningham weakly grounded to short, but the throw pulled Brendon Lyons off the bag. With more than enough steps to make the out, Lyons awaited Cunningham. The St. Clair catcher then took a run at the Hawks first baseman as tag was applied. This started a bench clearing, but soon the teams were spread apart, as the umpire gained control of the situation.
There will be a number of players identified and suspensions are imminent. Names of players are not available at this point.
With the split, the Hawks record improves to 8-6, and the Saints check in at 11-3.
Humber will follow a similar schedule to that of what the Saints have experienced, as they are scheduled for two in London on Tuesday and two at home versus George Brown on Wednesday. This is six games in just four days.