Gulls 1 Giants 0
It was an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel to kick off the Western Canadian Baseball League season at Gulls Stadium.
In front of a sold-out crowd at Pogdal Park in Sylvan Lake, the hometown Gulls walked off the Fort McMurray Giants with a 1-0 victory in the home opener.
Catcher Hank Dodson played hero for the Gulls, with a sacrifice fly to centre field that scored Aiden Jackson to win the game. in the bottom of the ninth with one out, Jackson found his way on after getting hit by a pitch from Kody Butt. Jonah Weisner walked and Chase Rodriguez also got hit by a pitch to load the bases for Dodson.
Dodson, a native of Summerfield, North Carolina, played last season with Utah Tech University. He didn’t have a hit Friday before cashing in the game-winning RBI.
While Dodson was the hero, the Gulls got a steady performance from ace Ty Boudreau. Boudreau went seven shutout innings while striking out a game-high nine Giants hitters in the home opener Friday night. He allowed just four hits, none of which went for extra bases.
Gulls standout Tyler McWillie earned the win for the home side, he tossed two scoreless innings in relief, without a strikeout or walk, while only allowing one hit.
Unfortunately for the hometown fans, Giants hurler Alex Escobar silenced the Gulls bats for seven shutout innings of his own. Escobar worked through some trouble but struck out four and only walked two.
Gulls returning right fielder Matty Fung had two hits on the night and was the only Sylvan Lake hitter with multiple hits.
The three-game series continues Saturday, with first pitch set to fly at 7:05 p.m. Sunday, game time is 2:05 p.m. Following Sunday’s contest, the Gulls will welcome the WCBL defending champion Okotoks Dawgs to town on Tuesday.