Pitcher Mike Musselwhite, a Lambrick Park secondary alumnus, throws in relief for the Victoria HarbourCats in West Coast League playoff action Tuesday at Royal Athletic Park. He closed out an 8-2 Victoria win over Kelowna in game 1 with two shutout innings. Don Descoteau/Victoria News

Victoria strikes first in WCL baseball playoffs

HarbourCats down Falcons 8-2 in North Division opener, can clinch series in Kelowna tomorrow

Back-to-back sixth-inning home runs by Harrison Bragg and D.J. Porter broke open a tight game Tuesday and helped carry the Victoria HarbourCats to an 8-2 home win over Kelowna in game 1 of the teams’ West Coast League North Division playoff semifinals series.

For Bragg, the massive two-run shot to left field off Falcons starter Cal Hehnke was his third home run in the past two games, following the two bombs he hit in a Sunday’s 17-16 loss in Port Angeles. He finished with two hits Tuesday night.

The win gives the Cats the edge heading back to Kelowna for game 2 tomorrow night (Aug. 9). Game 3, if necessary, would be played there on Thursday.

Should the HarbourCats win the series, Victoria fans would see more home games in the WCL final against the South Division winner. Yakima Valley beat Corvallis 9-3 in the other semifinal opener.

Ethan Fox, who scattered three hits over four innings of relief as Victoria’s third pitcher of the night, picked up the win on the mound. Lambrick Park secondary product, lefty Mike Musselwhite, finished things up throwing two strong innings and allowing just one base runner.

HarbourCats starter Garrison Ritter allowed just one hit – a solo homer by Kade Hall – over three innings, but struggled with control and gave up both runs. Reliever Cole Masik wasn’t the answer either, walking all three batters he faced, which opened the door for Fox to shut the door.

Victoria totalled 11 hits on the night, with Hunter Vansau, Kevin Collard, Andrew Schaps and Po-Hao Huang also collecting a pair.

The locals made Kelowna reliever Ryan Smith pay in the seventh, scoring twice on two hits and three walks, one of which came with the bases loaded.

Alex McGarry led the Falcons with two hits.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

RCMP ask for public assistance to determine the cause of the weekend fire

RCMP are investigating the cause of the South Island Concrete fire

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

Victoria considers hiring more staff, less public engagement to get bike lanes built faster

An expedited installation of bike lanes could cost an extra $410,000

Victoria to lose $6 million in funding for new Crystal Pool

No extension for March 31 gas tax grant deadline

VIDEO: 8 things you need to know about the 2019 B.C. budget

Surplus of $247 million with spending on children, affordability and infrastructure

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

‘Bullet missed me by an inch’: Man recounts friend’s killing at Kamloops hotel

Penticton man witnessed Summerland resident Rex Gill’s murder in Kamloops

B.C. BUDGET: Income assistance raise still leaves many below poverty line

$50 per month increase included in funding for poverty and homelessness reduction

B.C. BUDGET: Indigenous communities promised billions from gambling

Extended family caregiver pay up 75 per cent to keep kids with relatives

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

B.C. BUDGET: Carbon tax boosts low-income credits, electric vehicle subsidies

Homeowners can get up to $14,000 for heating, insulation upgrades

B.C. man survives heart attack thanks to Facebook

A Princeton man suffered a heart attack while at an isolated property with no cell service

B.C. man sues Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party over trademark

Satinder Dhillon filed application for trademark same day Maxime Bernier announced the new party

Most Read