The BOW Fall Classic 2018 was a successful weekend of great competition that had its battles both between the teams on the field and with the weather! With the rain off and on all weekend and fields sometimes in less than ideal shape, all games went on as a total of 22 teams (12 Midget and 10 Bantam) made their way to Kamloops to play some ball.
In the Premier Division, 4 spots were available for the 12 teams to qualify for the Spring Premier Showcase. The breakdown had 3 pods of 4 teams in which the Pod winner plus one Wild Card advanced to the Qualifier Round and the next 4 best records made the Single Elimination Playoff. The #1 through 4 seeds would have two opportunities to qualify while the #5 through 8 seed had to win two in a row on the Sunday to make the Spring Showcase. The Premier Showcase runs in early April and is considered one of the elite Showcase tournaments in Western Canada with our National Team Coach Greg Hamilton in attendance along with a number of MLB scouts and college recruiters.
Breakdown of Results: Pod winners were the Pitt RiverRats(1 Seed), Coquitlam Reds(2) and White Rock Tritons(3) with the Victoria Eagles(4) picking up the Wild card spot. Those ranked #5 through #8 were the Victoria Mariners, North Delta Blue Jays, Parksville Royals and Edmonton Prospects Gold. The four teams that just missed the playoffs were the Badlands Academy, Cloverdale Spurs, Edmonton Prospects Black and Chilliwack Cougars and they played a consolation game to finish off their tournament.
In the playoff round, the Pitt River Rats were knocked off by the Victoria Eagles, and Coquitlam Reds defeated the WR Tritons. The Eagles and Reds advanced to the Spring Showcase and were able to hit the road!
Not all was lost as both Pitt River and White Rock would get another chance to qualify as they would take on the winners of the #5 vs. #8 seed and #6 vs. #7 games. In those games, the Edmonton Prospects Gold(8) team defeated the Victoria Mariners(5) and the North Delta Blue Jays(6) knocking off the Parksville Royals(7) thus setting up the last two games of the qualification tournament – Pitt River Rats vs. Edmonton and North Delta vs. White Rock. Both games were close until the later innings but Edmonton defeated Pitt River and North Delta knocked off White Rock to gain the last 2 births into the Spring tournament.
With the Qualification weekend wrapped up, the teams are now set for the “Best of the West” Showcase that will take place from April 11 – 14: Abbotsford Cardinals, BLE Selects, Coquitlam Reds, Edmonton Prospects, Langley Blaze, North Delta Blue Jays, North Shore Twins, Okotoks Dawgs, Victoria Eagles, Vauxhall Baseball Academy.
In the Bantam division there were 10 teams that geographically spanned from Vancouver Island to Saskatchewan entered in the tournament. In Round Robin action, each team played three games with the Pod winner + One Wild Card team advancing to the playoff round and the rest playing a consolation game.
Pod A, the Going Yard Goats (Saskatchewan) won that pod over the Kamloops River Dogs and Parksville Royals; Pod B saw the Coquitlam Reds take the division over the Okanagan A’s and Parkland Twins: Pod C was the Prince George Knights that came out on top over the Trail Orioles, Whalley Chiefs and the White Rock Tritons (Wild Card team). With the 3 Pod winners and Wild Card team determined the playoffs were set and all other teams played a consolation game to finish off the weekend.
In playoff action it couldn’t have been any closer as both games went into extra innings! The Coquitlam Reds knocked off the White Rock Tritons and the Prince George Knights edging the Going Yard Goats thus setting up the Championship game. Coquitlam took an early 4 – 0 lead and then had to come up big defensively with rally ending plays as the feisty Knights kept the pressure on! In the 4th inning, the Knights had the bases loaded and then in the 6th they had runners at 2nd and 3rd with less than two out. In the end, the Reds win the Best of the West Bantam Fall Classic with a 4 -1 victory.
Thank you to all teams and we look forward to seeing you at our Spring classic “Best of the West” Tournament Series.
April 4 – 7 Midget Classic and Bantam Classic
April 11 – 14 Premier Showcase and Bantam Showdown