Tonight could be the night.
Tonight could be the night that Sight & Sound claim the Rainy River District Fastball League championship and thus collect a rarity in sport—a championship “three-peat.”
But the two-time defending champs will have their work cut out for them if they hope to accomplish such a feat. After their 8-0 drubbing of Stratton this past Tuesday night, Rainy River will be the opposition for tonight’s game that is slated for 8 p.m. at VanJura Stadium.
Rainy River came out of the regular season with an unblemished record and a first-place seeding heading into the playoffs, and started out with an impressive 17-0 win over Red Gut Bay.
They were then able to squeak by the fourth-seeded Stratton by a score of 4-3 in the next round of the playoffs, but then suffered their first loss against (who else?) Sight & Sound last Thursday that knocked them to the ‘B’ bracket, which they won, as previously mentioned, over Stratton.
The league observes a two-loss knockout format, so in turn, Sight & Sound, who are undefeated in the playoffs, have two cracks at claiming the title. If they don’t win tonight, the next championship game would be played next Tuesday night in Rainy River.
Sight & Sound, who entered with a third-place seeding coming out of the regular season, opened the playoffs with a 16-6 victory over Big Island, and then edged second-place Barwick by a score of 5-4.
Rainy River was up next, and they won that game, which set up a date with the Big Grassy Lightning this past Tuesday night here.
And that game was far from having been a cake-walk, as Sight & Sound received a blow even before the game began when Jill Flamand, who is the wife of starting pitcher, Harvey Flamand, got struck in the face by an errant ball during warmups that required a trip to the emergency department—she was released later that night, but Flamand did not return to play in the game.
His presence was missed as “Beeker” Watson, who usually occupies the shortstop position and had pitched in only two other contests in the season, stepped to the mound. He’d given up seven runs by the second inning.
But Sight & Sound clawed their way back and by the fifth inning they had a 12-9 lead heading into the sixth inning. Then a three-run homerun shot by Big Grassy’s starting pitcher, Jeff Morrison, tied things at 12.
So it looked like extra innings, but then Watson walked three consecutive batters, which set up, of all things, a grandslam from the bat of Tom Jack that looked to seal the game.
But this game was anything but wrapped up, as Sight & Sound showed the poise and composure of the veterans they are and rallied for the win after Paul Visser was called safe after a crash at home plate, giving them a dramatic 16-15 win.
Tonight could be the night.