The Sudbury Mosquito Shamrocks captured their second Select Ontario Baseball Association tournament of the summer, making a strong case, in the process, to look seriously at a jump in levels come the summer of 2015.
The Shamrocks simply manhandled much of the opposition at the 2014 Baseball Oakville Select Mosquito Tournament, winning five straight games by a margin of 97-27.
The trend for the northern lads started early, as the Shamrocks laid a 23-0 beating on the Brantford Red Sox in their opening game. Carter Benson pitched three shutout innings, earning game MVP honours, while Ben Fowke and Cole McPhee combined to drive home seven runs.
A very similar story in Game 2 as Sudbury thumped St. Catharines 21-1, with Keenan Castle striking out six batters in three innings of work. Castle would add a three-hit performance to his resume, named the game MVP for his efforts, with Eric Dissanayake and Braeden Pakkala both going three-for-three to power the offence.
The depth of the Shamrocks pitching staff was even more evident in Game 3 as starter Carson Harvey allowed only four runs in his three-inning stint, leading Sudbury to a 24-4 win over the Oakville A's.
Defensively solid throughout the weekend, Brian Fink shone at second base in Game 3, adding a pair of RBIs to earn game MVP accolades, with Cole Goudreau coming around to score twice for the winners.
Facing the Burlington Bears in the sweltering heat on Sunday morning, the Shamrocks started slowly in their semifinal affair, eventually outlasting the Bears 22-16.
Some solid pitching, in relief, from Fowke and Pakkala helped to settle the Sudbury defence, while Ryan Rubic ripped a three-run home run as part of a four RBI effort against Burlington.
The game MVP award was presented to Rubic, with Castle and Pakkala both chipping in by going 3-for-4 at the plate. Playing a three-and-a-half hour marathon in the morning created some challenges for the northern boys, enjoying only 30 minutes of rest before facing Oakville in the final.
Clearly tired and fatigued, the locals dug deep as the Shamrocks used a combination of Benson, Castle and Harvey on the mound, getting the job done.
Benson and Fowke had three hits apiece for the tournament champs, with Gavin Salo, Goudreau and Rubic each punching in with a pair of hits.
Sudbury would take a 7-6 lead into the top of the seventh inning, with Harvey stepping up to strike out the side on just 14 pitches.
The Sudbury Mosquito Shamrocks roster features Carter Benson, Keenan Castle, Braedan Pakkala, Ben Fowke, Cole Goudreau, Cole McPhee, Carson Harvey, Gavin Salo, Eric Dissanayake, Justin Lancup, Caston Antonioni, Ryan Rubic, Brian Fink and Ryan Lacasse.