After watching its lead vanish in the eighth inning in an opening-night loss to Japan at the Ramada World Baseball Challenge, Canadian Sidearm Nation got what it came for in a come-from-behind 6-5 win over the Thurston County Generals Saturday night at Citizen Field.
Joey Underwood scored from second base on Justin Johnston's sacrifice fly for a walkoff ending in the bottom of the ninth inning.
The Alberta squad scored two runs in the seventh inning to grab the lead and limited the Generals to just four hits in the victory, which evened Sidearm Nation's record at 1-1.
Kevin Czarnecki led off the bottom of the seventh with walk issued by Generals pitcher Eli Fulton and stole second base. Then with two out, Brent Cooper hit a ground-rule double to bring Czarnecki in with the go-ahead run. The next batter, Duncan Elgert, hit a single to right field to drive in Cooper.
The Generals came back with one run in the ninth inning to tie the game 5-5. Nick Bowman singled and got himself into scoring position on an error from Sidearm Nation shortstop Joey Underwood, and Bryan Lounsbury's sacrifice fly to to right field allowed Bowman to score.
The Generals got themselves another baserunner with two out in the ninth when Keone McKee reached on an error from the third baseman Czarnecki, but Tyler Vavra, who came in to relieve Sidearm Nation starter Scott Beever to start the seventh inning, ended the inning by striking out Tyler Wambold.
Based in Olympia, Wash., the Generals are scheduled to play their second game of the nine-day tournament Sunday night at 8 p.m. at Citizen Field against the Kamloops Sun Devils.
Roswell Invaders 8 Kamloops Sun Devils 7
In the afternoon game Saturday, the Roswell Invaders made their WBC debut playing long ball with the Sun Devils. They connected for five home runs which plated seven runs on the way to an 8-7 victory. Kaohu Gaspar’s single shot in the eighth inning off pitcher Alex Reid stood as the winning run.
Cody Bishop touched off the fireworks in the bottom of the first inning and repeated with another round-tripper in the fifth, while going 3-for-4 at the plate. Cody Coffman’s three-run offering in the third gave the Invaders a 4-1 lead. Joey Miller also cleared the wall with a solo shot in the fifth.
The Sun Devils have added some local content to their lineup for the tournament and one of those Prince George players, left fielder Brandon Hunter, drove in a run with a single off Nick Bozman which tied the game 4-4 in the fifth inning. But the Invaders came right back with two runs in the bottom of the fifth and another in the eighth to protect their lead.
Eric Gleese earned the victory on the mound for Roswell, allowing seven hits and four runs with nine strikeouts through six innings. Reid pitched a complete game for the Sun Devils, giving up 11 hits and eight runs while walking three batters.
Roswell will be back on the field Sunday at 4 p.m. to face Team Japna. Japan opened the tournament Friday with an 11-7 win over Sidearm Nation.