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Micksburg Twins push for championship with win over Kars Aces

Jamie Bramburger

By Jamie Bramburger, Special to The Daily Observer

MICKSBURG - The Micksburg Twins have moved closer to winning their first championship in three years in the Greater Ottawa Men's Fastball League. The Twins made it two wins in a row to start the double knock-out league final tournament with a 9-6 win over the visiting Kars Aces.

The Twins opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning when Jamey Mick reached base on an error and was driven home by a triple off the bat of Joran Graham. Graham later scored when Cory Costello grounded out to give Micksburg a 2-0 lead.

Micksburg added to their lead in the bottom of the second inning when Connor Moss reached on a controversial play that plated Kyle Jackson, who had earlier singled. With two outs and Jackson having advanced to third base, he came home on a close play at first base, when the umpire ruled the first baseman had taken his foot off of the bag. After a brief discussion with the home plate umpire, the call stood and the Twins were up 3-0.

The Aces exploded in the third when they scored five runs. Nick Ellis drove in the first run with a single to left field to make it 3-1. Then with the bases loaded Chad Milne hit an RBI single to drive in two more runs to tie the game at 3. Ian King then tripled on a deep drive to centre field to score two more runs, giving the Aces a 5-3 lead.

The see-saw battle continued in the bottom of the fourth inning when Micksburg scored twice to tie the game at 5. Matt McIntyre singled, then stole second, and scored on a single by Quinton Rook. Rook then crossed the plate on a game tying triple by Andrew McIntyre. Rook was stranded at third when veteran Mick grounded out to the shortstop to end the inning.

Kars jumped back in the lead in the fifth inning when Chad Milne singled and advanced to second when the centre-fielder misplayed the ball. He moved to third on a ground out and then scored on a wild pitch to put the Aces in front 6-5.

Micksburg starting pitcher Joran Graham led off the bottom of the fifth with a "Baltimore Chop" single through the middle. After Chad Costello reached on an error, both runners scored on a double off the wall in centre field by Kyle Jackson to give Micksburg a 7-6 advantage. Jackson's hit knocked Kars starting pitcher Brad Porter out of the game.

The Twins added two more runs in the fifth when Jackson stole third and made it all the way home when the catcher's throw ended up in left field, after skipping off the third baseman's glove. They then blew it open when Scott Conroy doubled down the left field line to score Rook and Matt McIntyre, who had both reached on singles, making it 9-6 for Micksburg.

Graham went the distance to pick up the win. Despite being roughed up in the third inning, Graham put together a strong performance striking out ten batters.

Teams that lose two games in the tournament are eliminated. With two consecutive wins, the Twins are in the driver's seat.

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