Two victories over the Parksville Royals have vaulted the North Delta Blue Jays into a playoff position in B.C. Premier Baseball League.
The Jays improved to 7-8 (won-loss) on the season, good for a tie for eighth place, a game-and-a-half ahead of Parksville.
North Delta cruised to a 12-2 win in the first game Sunday at Mackie Park, then edged the Royals 8-7 to complete the sweep.
The Blue Jays rapped out 11 hits against a pair of Parksville pitchers in game one, scoring four times in the bottom of the first inning and adding six more runs in the second.
Shane Wlodarczak drove in four runs, hitting two-run doubles in both the first and second inning, eventually scoring each time. Shoma Sasaki and Clint Taylor also had two hits each, with Brad Antchak collecting a pair of RBIs.
Sebastian Hayes got the win after allowing two earned runs on three hits and three walks, collecting five strikeouts along the way.
Game two was much closer. North Delta took a 4-2 lead into the top of the fifth inning, only to allow the Royals to score four runs for a 6-4 advantage. Parksville added one in the top of the seventh inning, then looked for three outs in the bottom half of the frame for the win.
The Royals retired two batters, but North Delta scored four times for the victory.
Wlodarczak was credited with an RBI when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and nobody out. One batter later, Tyler Smythe singled to score Sodai Hoshi to cut the difference to 7-6. Parksville retired the next two batters to get to within one out of a win, but Steven Van Vooght ended the game with a two-run single.
Sasaki also drove in a pair of runs with a fourth-inning single.
Jays pitcher Brett Sakaki got the win in relief, allowing one unearned run in two and two-thirds innings.
The Blue Jays are at Whalley Stadium to face the Whalley Chiefs tomorrow (Friday) night at 6:30 p.m., before a double header Sunday at noon against the Nanaimo Pirates. Nanaimo is in first place with a 13-3 record.
The Chiefs also play Sunday, travelling to New Westminster’s Queen’s Park Stadium for two games against the Vancouver Cannons. First pitch is at 5 p.m.