© Guardian photo by Mitch MacDonald
Charlottetown Islanders Will Connolly puts out Moncton Mets' Mark Fournier before passing it to first during Friday night's playoff game at Memorial Field.
Dillon Doucette and the Charlottetown Gaudet’s Auto Body Islanders found their bats at the right time.
The Islanders defeated the Moncton Mets 6-4 to force a fifth and deciding game in the New Brunswick Senior Baseball League quarterfinals.
In the sixth inning, with two outs and the game tied at four, Doucette stepped up to the plate.
“Loose one,” yelled Islanders’ third basemen Jordan Duffy.
That’s exactly what Doucette did, knocking a solo home run over the left field fence to put the Islanders up by one.
“I heard him,” he laughed.
“It’s a great feeling and anything to help the team. I was seeing the ball well tonight and it was just great to finally get a hold of one.”
After Mets’ relieving pitcher Ben Higgins walked Morgan MacLean. Sean Corcoran stepped up to the plate and launched a triple to centrefield scoring MacLean from first.
“It’s good to get everything going, everyone had good at-bats and we were getting on base,” said Doucette.
That was all the Islanders needed, as starting pitcher Jacob Beck shut down the Mets offence in the seventh.
The Islanders found themselves in a hole early when the Mets plated four runs in the third inning.
“When you give up four in the third it’s tough because we have to dig in as a team. It’s my responsibility to go out and shut them down from there, a couple of bad breaks led to some runs,” said Beck.
The Islanders answered back with three runs of their own to trail by one after three. Taylor Larkin, Andrew MacDonald and Doucette all scored.
Doucette, a regular shortstop for the Islanders, played first base in Game 4, and in the fourth inning with two outs and a runner on third he showed off his quickness. He sprawled out for a ground ball down the first base line to get the out and keep it a one run game.
“It’s a new position to me for sure but I’ll play anywhere to help us out,” Doucette said about playing first base.
“I could see it coming and anything to get in front of it really. I was happy when I seen the ball in my glove.”
The Peakes native would be the first batter to the plate in the bottom of the inning, smacking a ground ball up the middle for a single. He would later score to tie up the game.
He ended the game 2-for-3 with a home run, one walk and plated three times.
“I tried to slow things down, I didn’t have a good game the other night, I just had to tell myself to play ball and have some fun.”
Beck would find his grove shutting down the Mets offence to two hits in the final three innings for the complete game victory, while Higgins who took over from starting pitcher Chris Damours took the loss.
The Islanders will travel to Moncton tonight to face the Mets in the deciding game of the series.
Jordan Stevenson will take to the mount for the 7:30 p.m. start at Kiwanis Park.