WCBL history has been made in a decorated fashion.
The Okotoks Dawgs clinched the Western Division title with their 10-2 thumping of the Lethbridge Bulls Saturday night while also breaking a club record – picking up their 36th regular season win of the season.
An unforgiving and savage Dawgs offence kept the pedal to the metal all night to harass the Bulls during the fourth meeting between the two clubs. The win marks the eleventh time the Dawgs won scoring in double digits.
Okotoks (36-10) scored in each of the opening four innings while the Lethbridge offence could not generate any offence on Dawgs starter Billy Brand until the end of his outing.
Southeastern Community catcher Gavin Logan, UBC product Jaxon Valcke and University of Nebraska Husker infielder Shay Schanaman carried the charge on offence with two RBIs each during the win.
Early RBIs from catcher Logan, Schanaman and Thompson Rivers second baseman Liam Rihela gave the Dawgs an early 3-0 lead heading into the third inning thanks to a game-changing defensive effort.
Okanagan College senior Davis Todosichuk changed the outcome of the contest in the top of the third with his incredible defensive play with two men on base.
He saved sure runs when he robbed WCBL RBI leader Kaleb Warden in the inning with an incredible sliding snag that he made while running towards the warning track before harnessing the ball with an over-the-shoulder catch.
The stage was set for lead-off man Valcke in the bottom half who’s fourth jack of the year sailed over the left-field wall, staying just fair of the foul pole to clear the Seaman Stadium fence to push the score to 4-0 with the solo shot.
Oregon State prospect Jacob Melton added another RBI in the inning to push the Okotoks lead to five.
The Dawgs added another two-runs during the fourth inning from Bellevue University first baseman Riley Baasch and catcher Logan before the Bulls finally showed signs of life against the Dawgs’ starter.
Point University hurler Brand threw five innings of balanced baseball, surrendering two runs on five hits while striking out five to improve his record to 4-0 on the season.
Warden got some form on revenge as he broke Brand’s shutout bid on his only mistake of the game when the WCBL RBI leader took him yard with a two-run shot during the fifth to make it a 7-2 ballgame.
Nonetheless, the Dawgs kept on making it rain on the Bulls with three unanswered runs to end the ball game.
A fielder’s-choice from Valcke added a run in the sixth set up Tiffin University catcher Noah Penney and Schanaman who posted Okotoks’ fourth two-spot on the board.
Dawgs Academy 18U Black and future Oregon State product Micah McDowell registered his first hit for the senior team during an already special evening for his club during his pinch-hit in the eighth.
The Dawgs travel south to face these same Bulls Sunday afternoon with first pitch set for 2:05 p.m.