The Wiarton Nationals inched into the playoffs at the Softball Canada Men’s Canadian Fast Pitch Championship, but came up just short against the Elmira Expos.
The two Ontario representatives at the national tournament met in the fifth versus eighth first-round playoff matchup.
The fifth-place Expos notched the 4-3 win thanks to a two-out single in the sixth-inning that scored the winning run.
Tim Freeman recorded the RBI as Brian Eidt crossed the plate.
Brent Thompson hit a home run in the contest while Caleb Keeshig and Dustin Veenhof split duties on the mound combining on six strikeouts and four earned runs for the Nationals.
The Expos went on to win the bronze medal while the Newfoundland Galway Hitmen beat the British Columbia Sooke Loggers, 8-0, in the championship contest.
Ty Sebastian and Blake Underwood led the way for the Nationals in the team’s first action at the Softball Canada nationals. Sebastian drove in five runs while Underwood notched four RBIs.
Sebastian swatted a .438 batting average with two home-runs.
Dustin Veenhof recorded a 1.75 ERA through 20 innings pitched and 22 Ks while going 1-3 in the tournament.
Caleb Keeshig struck-out 21 and finished with a 1-0 record and a 5.68 ERA.
On Friday, the Nationals fell 8-2 to the British Columbia Sooke Loggers after the teams battled to a 3-2 score in the first inning.
Sebastian’s two-run homer drove in both Nationals runs, but Scott Lieph and Tyler Randerson would shut the door for B.C. from there combining for nine strikeouts on the day.
Daniel Lee and Kyle Cowick both smacked home-runs for the loggers off Nationals’ pitcher Caleb Keeshig.
Cowick had four RBIS in the contest.
On Friday night, the Nationals closed out their round-robin schedule with a 3-1 win over the Saskatoon Angels that earned them a berth into the playoff round. Underwood’s two-run shot in the top of the fifth-inning put the Nats up 2-1 before Cole McDougall’s sixth-inning double scored Todd McCauley and added the insurance run.
The win gave the Nats a 2-4 record at the close of the round robin qualifying the team in the eighth and final playoff spot.