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By Robert Belardi
In their first season in the North Dufferin Baseball League, the Caledon Nationals (Jr.) made it all the way to the finals and the Bolton Brewers have moved on to the next round in the senior division.
Not knowing how this year was going to pan out, the Nationals simply went out there to have fun and play ball. Of course, when you're having a good time, things come a bit easier.
“We played very well. Lots of hitting. We had the top five hitters in the league,” said head coach Bill O'Neil.
Reid Dieburt led the team with a .560 batting average followed by Daniel Amodeo (.536), Cameron O'Neil (.539), Mario Accardo (.486) and Mark Sharples (.485).
The Jr. Nationals tied for first place in the division with a 7-3 record along with the Georgina Bulldogs (Jr.) and the Creemore Padres (Jr.).
But, because the Nats finished with 102 runs for and 43 runs against in the year, they earned the top seed heading into the playoffs.
The Nats would be the only one of those three teams to make it all the way to the finals against the fourth place Midland Twins. Unfortunately, the Nationals would fall to the Twins in six games.
“They had a good weekend. They were smashing the ball. Your bats are either on or they're not. We were okay, but we weren't our regular selves. We left a lot of runners on base,” O'Neil said.
“Not the timely hits when we needed them. Otherwise, I'm not going to complain. It was one hot weekend.”
The Nats didn't end up staying in Midland, so the team had to drive up and down from Midland to play their games.
O'Neil says everyone is expected to return for next year. He described this year as feeling just like normal.
“It felt just like normal, like any other year just a condensed season. It took us a couple weeks to get into the groove. Our bats came around quickly. The pitching suffered the most,” O'Neil said.
Nick Fiorucci predominantly pitched over the course of the season logging 22.1 innings. Mark Sharples, who also pitches and plays infield, led the team with a 3-0 record.
On the other side in the senior division in the NDBL, the Bolton Brewers defeated the Mansfield Cubs in a best of three series.
The Brewers defeated the Cubs 8-2 in game one and 10-0 in game two to move on to the next round.
“At this point, it's unknown who we play and when. We either play Midland or Barrie. Waiting on the winner of the Midland-Creemore series,” head coach Mike Wallace said.
“I think it will be a good series either way. Especially in a best two of three series, anything can really happen.”
The Brewers had quite an exceptional season of their own also finshing first in the senior division because of run differential.
Tied with an 8-2 record with the New Lowell Knights, the Brewers scored 78 runs forward, just one more than the Knights who recorded 77.
Typically, in a regular calendar season, Wallace says rounds one and two are usually a best of five and the finals is a best of seven. However, with this shortened season the first two rounds are a best of three and the finals is a best of five.
Wallace and the Brewers will continue to wait until things are finalized.
Post date: 2021-09-02 11:51:57
Post date GMT: 2021-09-02 15:51:57
Post modified date: 2021-09-02 11:52:02
Post modified date GMT: 2021-09-02 15:52:02
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