The two local B.C. Premier Baseball League (PBL) teams clashed for the second time this season, and the game’s two pitchers dominated.
The North Delta Blue Jays edged the Whalley Chiefs 1-0 Tuesday evening at Whalley Stadium, a game in which the two teams combined for just seven hits.
Tyler Hoefer was the winning pitcher, throwing a complete-game shutout for his first win in three decisions. Over the seven innings, the 18-year-old Sands Secondary student allowed just three singles and a double.
North Delta batters earned just three singles off Chiefs starter Thomas Espig, but two of them led to the game’s lone run in the top of the fifth inning. With two out, Mackenzie Marquis got on base with a hit, then moved to third base one batter later on Noah Or’s single. Marquis scored on a wild pitch.
Both pitchers walked three batters and struck out nine. Espig lost for just the second time in six starts, but the left-hander remains second in the PBL with a 0.92 earned run average.
The loss was the sixth in nine games for the Chiefs, who are now 15-10 (win-loss) on the season and in fourth place, four and one-half games behind the first-place North Shore Twins.
The Blue Jays, who have won four straight games, are now in sixth place with a 12-10 record, six games out of top spot.
They swept the Parksville Royals in a doubleheader Sunday at Mackie Park in North Delta by scores of 3-1 and 12-4.
In the first game, the Jays put three runs on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first inning, then let pitcher Ryder Mavis do the rest. Mavis pitched a complete game, allowing Parksville batters to earn just five hits and a walk while striking out six times, scoring one earned run.
North Delta scored their first run on a Hoefer single which scored Or from second base. Hoefer and Cole Evans added two more runs on a single by Matt Poirier.
The home team rocked three Royals pitchers with 12 hits, including five for extra bases, in the second game.
Justin Olic was the winning pitcher, striking out 11 batters in six innings pitched. The win was his fourth of the season, third-best in the league.
Hoefer had a huge game at the plate, going four-for-four with a double, two triples and three runs scored. Marc Ashford had a pair of singled and three RBIs, while Mavis and Christopher Cook each had a single and a double.
Both the Blue Jays and Chiefs have the weekend off and will resume play Tuesday. The Blue Jays host the 10-22 White Rock Tritons at 6 p.m. at Mackie Park, while the Chiefs are at Whalley Stadium for a game with the 8-11 Coquitlam Reds at 7 p.m.