Thompson’s home run powers Wiarton Nationals to ISC II Tournament Championship

Written by Bob on August 13th, 2015

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. – It took a slugfest of 24 hits and 19 runs – including five home runs – to decide the 2015 ISC II Tournament Championship.

And when the final home run of the game shot like a rocket over the right-centerfield fence, the Wiarton Nationals of Ontario, Canada began celebrating a hard-fought, 13-6, victory over fellow Canadians, the Kingston, Ontario, Axemen, Thursday afternoon, at the Belleville Softball Complex.

2015 ISC II Tournament Champion, Wiarton Nationals. The team includes Ryan Thompson, Travis Jones, Darcy Giles, Tyler Hewitt, Brad Thompson, Joel Twigger, Troy Barfoot, Gowan Stuck, Cole McDougall, Andy Jackson, Jason Miller, Adam Stuck, Todd McCauley, Zack Carson, Brent Thompson, Matt Robbins; Mgr. Trevor Courch, and coaches Tony Lisk and Peter McDougall. Contributed Photo

2015 ISC II Tournament Champion, Wiarton Nationals. The team includes Ryan Thompson, Travis Jones, Darcy Giles, Tyler Hewitt, Brad Thompson, Joel Twigger, Troy Barfoot, Gowan Stuck, Cole McDougall, Andy Jackson, Jason Miller, Adam Stuck, Todd McCauley, Zack Carson, Brent Thompson, Matt Robbins; Mgr. Trevor Courch, and coaches Tony Lisk and Peter McDougall. Contributed Photo

    FENCE BUSTING RBI LEADER

Brent Thompson came to the plate in the bottom of the fifth with Ryan Thompson on first base by way of a leadoff walk. And he wasted no time in driving an outside rise ball over the fence for a seven-run-rule, walk-off win.

Thompson – selected an All-World infielder and the ISC II leader in RBI with nine – had a great championship game, driving in four runs in going 2-for-3. But he was just one of eight Nationals who pounded out 13 hits off four Axemen pitchers.

    NATIONALS EDGE AXEMEN

Wiarton battled through the 18-team tournament by winning five consecutive games. Their toughest contest was in the winner’s bracket final over these same Axemen in which the ball clubs battled nine innings before the Nationals could squeeze out a 3-2 win.

Dropped into the losers bracket, the Axemen (4-2) again had to go extra innings before overcoming the Waterdown Hammer, 4-1, with Brad Pender blasting a three-run home run in the top of the ninth to send the Axemen into the championship.

    PENDER HOMERS, NATIONALS ERUPT

Pender came right back in the championship, leading off the game and drilling the first pitch from Nationals’ starter, Travis Jones, over the centerfield fence to give the Axemen the early advantage.

But the Nationals – who scored 30 runs in the tournament – displayed their hitting prowess in the bottom of the first by sending 11 batters to the plate and erupting for seven runs. Adam Stuck led off the inning with a hit and completed the scoring as the 10th batter by driving in the final run.

And Wiarton just kept pouring on the runs with four more in the second inning. Stuck, who was 4-for-4 with three RBI, drove in his second run, along with Andy Jackson and Matt Robins, each with a hit and an RBI to stretch the Nationals lead to 11-2.

The Nationals Travis Jones was pitching effectively through the first two innings, but he ran into big trouble in the third.

    AXEMEN SHOW HOME RUN POWER

The Axemen – who won the home run derby with four – drilled three of them off Jones as Mark Lewis, Dan Burnham and Jamie Thompson hit long bombs to pull the Axemen back into contention at 11-5.

Jeff Sergott beat out an infield chopper, sending Jones to the bench and bringing on Andy Jackson in relief. The right-hander got a strikeout and a double play to end the uprising.

But the Axemen came right back an inning later plating their sixth run on an infield error, pulling themselves right back in the game.

Or so it seemed, until Brent Thompson spoiled those thoughts with his game-winning home run. And after Thompson rounded the bases and stepped on home plate, the Nationals began celebrating, and a few minutes later were awarded the Gord Newman Memorial ISC II Championship trophy.

Jackson (1-2) picked up the win with an inning of work, allowing no hits and striking out two. Mitch Hardy started for the Axemen and took the loss, with Ian Wallwork, Jordan McDonald and Jamie Thompson also seeing action in the circle.

Wiarton’s Stuck was 4-for-4, 3 RBI; Troy Barefoot 1-for-4, run; Brent Thompson 2-for-3, 2 runs, 4 RBI; Cole McDougall 1-for-2, run; Travis Jones 1-for-2, 2 runs, RBI; Andy Jackson 1-for-2, 2 runs; Matt Robins 2-for-3, run, 2 RBI, and Jason Miller 1-for-3, run, RBI.

Kingston collected 11 hits, led by Brad Pender 2-for-2, 2 runs, RBI; Jamie Purdon 1-for-3, Mark Lewis 1-for-3, run, RBI; Dan Burnham 1-for-3, run, RBI; Jamie Thompson 2-for-3, 2 runs, RBI, Jarrett Williams 2-for-2, Adam Stroud 1-for-3, and Jeff Sergott 1-for-2.

Several players from both teams were selected all-tournament, or received most valuable awards.

MOST OUTSTANDING PITCHER
Travis Jones, Wiarton Nationals
4-0, 1.96 ERA, 32 innings, 28 hits, 29 strikeouts

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Cole McDougall, Wiarton Nationals
.692 avg. (9-for-13), 6 runs, 2 RBI, 2 home runs, double

CATCHERS
Nick Moore, Ariss, Ontario, Ponsonby Sting
Brayden Arcand, Lloydminster, SK, Dodgers

PITCHERS
Travis Jones, Wiarton Nationals
Mitch Hardy, Kingston, Ontario, Axemen
Chris Van Volkenberg, Waterdown, ON, Hammer

INFIELDERS
Brent Thompson, Wiarton Nationals
Jamie Purdon, Kingston Axemen
Scott Galenza, Lloydminster Dodgers
Jarrett Williams, Kingston Axemen
Mike Pullin, Waterdown Hammer

OUTFIELDERS
Cole McDougall, Wiarton Nationals
Todd Aldred, Lloydminster Dodgers
Brad Pender, Kingston Axemen
Adam Stuck, Wiarton Nationals

DESIGNATED PLAYER
Jamie Thompson, Kingston Axemen

RBI LEADER
Brent Thompson, Wiarton Nationals, 9 RBI

LEADING BATTER
Cole McDougall, Wiarton Nationals

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