It wasn’t a day for pitchers. But then in downpours, it rarely is.
In Kaien Island Slo-pitch League action last Thurday, the bats got soaked and home plate was more pond than pitch in Rupert Wood N’ Steel’s match versus the MacKenzie 69ers.
Both teams reached well into double digits in a 21-14 victory for Rupert Wood ‘N Steel and the game astonishingly featured only one home run; that of the inside-the-park, sweat-it-out kind.
“It was pretty awesome. I was just checking [the play] out [over my shoulder],” said the home run’s keeper, Mike Lewis of Wood ‘N Steel.
Three errors by MacKenzie allowed the short stop to capitalize on his long-field bomb to make it 6-2 at the top of the second inning to cap off a wild first inning explosion of runs that gave the lead to Wood N’ Steel which they would never relinquish.
Lewis’ homer began another five-run inning, enacting the mercy rule, ending the offense from Wood ‘N Steel for a little while before MacKenzie notched a comeback. A five-run inning of their own in the bottom of the third made it 10-7 and the squad sat down all three batters to follow that in the top of the third.
It’s no wonder Wood ‘N Steel can connect on the pitch, since they’ve been together as a group for the better part of five years.
“Without my team members, I wouldn’t perform the way I’m performing,” said Lewis, who is getting trained at the short stop position after team captain Sammy Bryant held the spot before Lewis.
“My usual position is out in left field or right, it depends on who we’re playing. That’s why I’m out there, I’ve got an arm too,” said Lewis.
Bryant had to wear MacKenzie’s colours on this day, along with a couple teammates to fill some holes on the 69ers’ roster. The Wood ‘N Steel captain made some nice grabs out in left field on his own teammates to bring MacKenzie to within two runs when the score was 16-14.
Matt Jackson also had quite the outing, sliding into both second and third-base, muddying his sweater in the process. Wood ‘N Steel would later strand him at third, with the inside of his car his only worry after being half-coated in turf.
Jackson and first-baseman Miranda Shaw would make a nice play in the infield to make the second-last out at first after Jackson threw an accurate blast to first. He’d later catch the final out on a pop fly.
“[The rain] is more of a confidence boost for me, because this is our weather that we like to play in,” said Lewis, who joined the team five years ago through his girlfriend Jade Benner. Lewis is now 18 and won’t be back in uniform for Wood ‘N Steel for another six weeks.
“I got a forestry job in Fort St. John so that’s where I’ll be … I’ll probably make a few more games in the playoffs [when I return] so that’s something I’m definitely looking forward to.”