The Duncan Masters clinched first place in the Nanaimo Senior Men’s Fastball League last week and will begin the championship series next Tuesday.
Wheatsheaf still had a chance to move into top spot by winning their final two games, including the July 18 contest at Glenora’s Waldon Field, but the Masters put an end to those hopes with a 9-4 victory.
Duncan took a 4-0 lead in the first two innings. Wheatsheaf scored three times in the third to make it close, but the host team added three more in the fourth to pull away for good.
An excessive number of bases on balls helped the Duncan cause, and the team needed only seven hits to generate the seven runs.
“The top of our order had a lot of walks,” Masters manager Joe DiLalla said. “The Wheatsheaf pitcher had trouble finding the plate the first couple of innings.”
Craig Snyder alone walked four times and scored twice, and Jamie Gicas walked twice and went 1-for-3 with two runs.
Dave Devana went 2-for-3 with a run and knocked in four runs, Dan Whiteford was 1-for-2 with a run, Trevor Gicas went 1-for-3 with a run and one RBI, Blair Bourgeault went 1-for-4 with a run, and Steve Lingren was 1-for-4 with a run and one RBI.
Sam Aldridge started on the mound and pitched six innings, striking out nine. Snyder came in for the seventh and picked up the save with two strikeouts.
The Masters finished the regular season with eight wins and five losses, followed by Wheatsheaf in second at 5-6-1, and Baker Supply third at 4-6-1.
Wheatsheaf and Baker Supply played a best-of-three semifinal series that ended Thursday evening, with the winner meeting Duncan in another best-of-three for the championship.
Game one of the final series will take place at Waldon Park next Tuesday (Aug. 1) at 7 p.m.