File photo of the Sylvan Lake Gulls field during the home opener of the 2022 season. (Photo by Ian Gustafson/ Advocate staff)

Sylvan Lake Gulls sweep Giants to begin season 3-0

Gulls back at it on Tuesday

The Sylvan Lake Gulls are a perfect 3-0 to start the Western Canadian Baseball League season.

Sylvan Lake swept the weekend series over the Fort McMurray Giants to begin the 2023 campaign beginning with a 1-0 win in the home opener on Friday. This was followed by a 1-0 victory on Saturday and a 5-4 win on Sunday.

After a pitcher’s duel Friday night, the two teams had yet another strong showing on the mound on Saturday.

Gulls’ pitcher Josh Tucker was tough to beat throwing seven scoreless innings striking out eight and allowing only three hits.

Closer Brian Baker came in the eighth inning only allowing one hit and struck out a single batter.

The Gulls’ bats were relatively quiet until the bottom of the second inning. With the bases loaded, second baseman Matty Fung knocked in a run on a single to the outfield.

The Gulls held on for the win after the magnificent pitching performances by Tucker and Baker.

The next day the two squads produced plenty more offence in a 5-4 victory to take home their third straight.

The Gulls took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning after second baseman Jonah Weisner hammered a pitch to score Fung on a double. Shortly after Shea Bowen singled to score Weisner who advanced to third base the play prior.

In the fifth inning, the Giants cut into the lead. After walking the first batter, Gulls’ pitcher Hunter Jones allowed the Giants to score but still maintained their 2-1 lead. Jones, who struck out nine in five innings of work, was substituted at the beginning of the sixth inning for Alex Galvin.

In the bottom of the fifth, the Gulls extended their lead scoring three runs. The first was a single by Fung followed by a two-run home run by Weisner.

The Giants answered in the sixth and seventh innings notching a combined three runs but they held on.

Pitcher Jaxon Zanolli pitched the final two innings to close out the game striking out three and holding the Giants hitless.

This week the Gulls will play four games against the defending champions Okotoks Dawgs beginning at home on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. Followed by a matchup in Okotoks on Friday, June 2nd before returning for the third game on Saturday at Gulls Stadium. The series will wrap up on Sunday in Okotoks at 2:05 p.m.

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