South Bend, Indiana – It doesn’t get much better than a walk-off win in the morning dew, an extra-inning victory on a professional turf field at noon, and catching a University of Notre Dame v. Oklahoma football game along with eighty thousand wild Fighting Irish fanatics!
The iCASE Huskies rallied for four runs in the bottom half of the final inning to edge the Coldwater Redbirds 8-7 in the 8:00am opening game of the South Bend EBT Fall Classic tournament. With one out, Cambridge’s Brandon Whalen was hit by a pitch, and advanced to third when St. Marys’ Evan Lindsay lined a single up the middle, his third hit of the game. St. Thomas’s Colton Stewart dropped a base hit into right field to drive home Whalen and advance Lindsay to third, and Guelph’s Nick Lannutti plated both runners to tie the game with a double down the left field line. The Redbirds’ shortstop couldn’t handle Brunner’s Brody Higgs sharp grounder, allowing Lannutti to reach third, and Waterloo’s Jacob Babstock’s frozen rope to left drove home the game winning run. Babstock led the offense with four hits in the game, with Waterloo’s Chris Iltshishin and Thunder Bay’s Cam McDougall chipping in with a pair of safeties apiece. Mexico City’s Ricardo Suarez threw three scoreless innings to notch the win.
In the noon affair at Coveleski Stadium against the Michigan Inferno, Lindsay allowed the game’s leadoff hitter to score, but shutout out the visitors for the next five innings. Guelph’s Nick Feren, Lindsay’s battery mate, singled to right to lead off the fifth, promptly swiped second, and St. Marys’ Jules Herrell plated him to knot the score with an opposite field line drive. Herrell, Ottawa’s Yanik Leroux pitched the sixth and seventh, keeping the Inferno at bay. In the top of the eighth, the first extra inning, Higgs singled with one out, and following Babstock’s pop out to short, Lindsay doubled Higgs to third. Waterloo’s Brady Schnarr drilled a single between first and second to give iCASE a lead it would not relinquish, as Iltshishin came in to close the door in the bottom half of the inning. Mississauga’s Colton Gill drilled a deep triple in the third inning but was left stranded.
Following the game, the bulk of the team were given courtesy tickets to see the Notre Dame v. Oklahoma football game, and as can be seen by the accompanying photos, took in all facets of the USA college football experience!
iCASE, with a Fall record of 7-3, was slated into a doubleheader the following day.
“We have been playing some pretty strong teams this Fall, as that is the only way to get better. It was pleasing to see the boys reach down and find a way to win both games today,” praised field manager Tom Valcke.
“Narrow victories like these are usually a function of doing the little things well, pitchers working quickly, throwing strikes, keeping the defense on its toes, and the defense making the routine plays that they should make. For sure, this was a memorable day in the iCASE evolution.”