HarbourCats Enjoy Early Dessert in Win over NanaimoBy Thomas Wilke June 08, 2022 10:15pm
Above Image: Luke Cheng picks up one of his four hits on Wednesday evening (Photo: Christian J Stewart)
Story by Thomas Wilke
June 8, 2012
Victoria, BC – In a wild Island clash of colors, a first inning offensive explosion powered the Victoria HarbourCats to an 11-8 win over the Nanaimo Bars (aka NightOwls) in West Coast League action Wednesday night at Wilson’s Group Stadium in Victoria.
The win was their second straight against Nanaimo and improved their record to 4-4 early on this summer.
Nanaimo was sporting their new “Nanaimo Bars” gold jerseys while Victoria rocked their vastly popular baby blue outfits. The HarbourCats built off the momentum from their comeback in the first game of this series, to bring some much needed offensive output to Royal Athletic Park early and often, scoring seven runs in their first at bat.
Those seven runs set the tone early for the HarbourCats, as there was really no question about which team came to the park more ready to play. Jake Skipworth was the first big hit of the game, tallying a two run double in the first. The stage was then set for the rest of the lineup, as Joseph Redfield also had a two RBI double in the first, before the HarbourCats took advantage of a few Nanaimo defensive miscues to tack on three more early runs.
The team from up the Island would end up scoring a few compensation runs in order to soften the blow in the next few innings, including a monster home run over the scoreboard from Connor Caskanette, but the southern island team would also add to their already large lead to more or less negate any consolation Nanaimo runs.
The game would finish with a 11-8 scoreline for the HarbourCats as Nanaimo was able to make a late push by pushing across four runs in the final three innings. Tobey Jackson’s two run homerun in the top of the seventh was a source of worry for Victoria fans, but the HarbourCats were able to weather the storm and close the game out.
Performances of the Night
- Joseph Redfield (Sam Houston State University) was a shining star for the HarbourCats, even during a spread out offensive performance. Redfield registered two doubles one of which was touched on earlier and went for two runs batted in, while coming around to score twice as well. His average on the season has improved to .280 and you can expect that he is just popping the bottle open on his potential.
- Victoria’s own Jordan Bond hit a solo homerun in the bottom of the eighth inning. That blast marked his first WCL hit and was a cool moment for him and the HarbourCats as he is one of the players who has been developing in the Victoria Collegiate Baseball Program throughout the winter and spring. Given the shot to play with the “parent club” this summer he has been very impressive so far and reiterated that fact with his first homerun, which by the way was no wall scraper as it slammed halfway up the scoreboard in left field.
- Shortstop Luke Cheng had another impressive evening, with four hits and two RBI to bump his average to .387 on the season. Cheng, along with newcomer Josh Rolling also turned in some nice defensive plays in the infield.
- Connor Caskenette hit a solo homerun in the top of the second. This specific play is highlighted as their performance of the night simply because of the jaw dropping length of the round tripper which left everyone in the park with a gawking expression toward left field. Caskenette took a 1-0 fastball deep to left field and over not just the scoreboard, but over the entire jumbotron as a whole. It was described as the longest home run that this park has seen, at least since the inception of the HarbourCats and prompted the entire crowd, Cats fans included, to give a standing ovation.
Nanaimo will be back tomorrow evening at 6:35 looking to salvage something out of this first ever Vancouver Island rivalry meeting. The HarbourCats have won both games in entertaining fashion and will look for the series sweep tomorrow. Get your tickets now to see the game in person at harbourcats.com/tickets. After tomorrow’s game the HarbourCats will welcome the Kelowna Falcons into town for a three game weekend set, with a fireworks display set to follow Saturday night’s game.