THE MAGIC HAS BEGUN!
Week 1 of the first ever five-team playoff format pitted the stealthy zombies from the Don River Don of the Dead against the starstruck asteroids from the Garrison Creek Glimmer in a matchup to see who would get to square off against the pesky Raccoons of Rouge River in round 2. Meanwhile, the evening tilt featured the harried fog of the Humber River Haze facing the cuddly cuddlers of the Credit River Care Bears in a bout that would determine who would advance to the Gold Medal game in Week 3 and who would square off against the loser of Don vs. Garrison for a chance at the Bronze medal.
Would Don River finally achieve enough brain eating to out flank the Glimmer or would Garrison Creek show us just how wide the expanse of the universe really is and take the game into interstellar territory? Would the Humber River squad heat up and blaze their way to the Gold Medal matchup or would the Care Bears band together in a unified rainbow of victory?
If you wanna know the results…
READ MORE TO FIND OUT!
Gif Credit: Robin Smillie 🙂
(5) DON RIVER DON OF THE DEAD @ (4) GARRISON CREEK GLIMMER
By Craig Fortier, Credit River Care Bears
The magic of post-season play was upon us and it wasn’t lost on the dark lords of Don who began their zombie march towards victory, but so too did the wonderous Glimmer supply the magic of quantum mechanics and gravity to lure the Zombies ever so closely to their orbit.
The game from the onset was a sea-saw battle as the lead flipped back and forth rapidly and frequently. It was all Zombieland in the top of the first with some extremely excellent melee weapon work off the bats of Leah Silverman, Tyler Chartrand, and T Vega. But perhaps no feat stood in comparison to Rachele Gottardi’s chaotic home run, the first of their career!, as they bound around the bases with no regard to where the ball might be and when it might be thrown. Rachele, the champion of the selfless play, helped shine a light on the Zombies that the Glimmer, perhaps, were not expecting.
Despite this beautiful start, it was the Glimmer who quickly recited the history of the earth, the universe and everything. Bringing together quantum theory and general relativity with ease, the Garrison stars led a charge back thanks to some timely hits by Kaleigh McGregor-Bales, Luke Fox, and Deeve 420. The stars of Glimmer pulled out in front in the first by a score of 5-4.
But Don was not to be out-Don! They quickly went to work to restore their lead with strikes by T Vega, Jo Jefferson, and Joseph Bautista to bring their lead up to 8-5. Yet, the shooting stars of Garrison showed their E=MC sq. with extreme speed and Annelies Cooper, Colin Hastings, and Ryan Hayes banged the ball all intergalactic planetary planetary intergalactic and regained the advantage! 10-8 Garrison.
In the midst of this melee, the heart and soul of the Zombies, Ro Velasquez Guzman putting on the catcher’s gear and captaining the team from the backstop called on their fellow nightcrawlers to come alive! And so they did! Peter Demakos belted a three run home run, Ryan Roantree slugged 3 hits, Jordan Pachciarz made a stealth grab in the outfield and super-sub Jasmine Irwin scored a key run! The Don were certainly not Dead on this night! The score coming into the final inning was Garrison 15 – Don 12.
Garrison, however, looked to put the game out of reach in the 5th – and it was the twinkling plays of Krysta Williams with a key run batted in, Paulina Rousseau with a key run scored, and big blows from borrowed Raccoon Yogi Acharya and north star Johann Juarez who expanded the Garrison lead to 20-14.
Don, made a strong comeback in the final inning, narrowing the gap to 20-16 with a chance for more, but in the brief moment of time and space the ball went up and found a Garrison glove and the Glimmer would move on to face the Raccoons, while Don would be set to play for a chance at the Bronze Medal game.
Final Score Don River 16 – Garrison Creek 20.
(3) HUMBER RIVER HAZE @ (2) CREDIT RIVER CARE BEARS
By Craig Fortier, Credit River Care Bears
The lights were shining brightly for the evening tilt between Credit and Humber, but as Dreamers have all become accustomed, an eerie fog was drifting across the visitors dugout. The Haze, who had held 2nd place in the league for almost six weeks had fallen to 3rd in the final week after a heartbreaking loss to Rouge. The Care Bears dugout, however, was beaming radiant positivity and goodness and lollipops and unicorns – and the players had just nearly arrived. So said the weather report from SkyDome.
Perhaps the meteorology was predictive in more ways that one. The Humber River Haze spread quickly out on the field of play and a thick fog proved impenetrable for the Care Bears offence. Thanks to the excellent pitching of the teal sparkled skirted Adam Dirks, the frequent flyer miles of the speedy Samira Banihashemi, Sarah Peek, Brianna Greaves and Oskar Eliashevsky, the steadiness of vets Alex Brant, Jill Aoki-Barrett, Nav Sidhu, and Robin Smillie, and the cataclysmic swats of hazy Umar Saeed, Andy Smith, and Niloo Golkar – Humber sprinted out to a 15-1 lead.
The Care Bears looked lost. They had not met such a foe since No Heart and his minion Beastly! The ursus collectively met, and sang their merry song, “Tender Hearts, Soft Balls, Care Bear staaaaaaare” and a magical rainbow appeared in the sky signalling that no longer were the cubbies playing as individuals, they were now a strongly unified collective and this turned the tide.
Captains, Good Vibe Bear (Robyn Letson) and Dead on the Inside Bear (Terrance Luscombe) led the charge with mighty swats. High Intensity Bear (Victoria Barnett), Energizer Bear (Jarl Gardner) and Punk isn’t Dead Bear (Alie Hermanutz) all made sure to find the honey at the bottom of the pot. Some key hits by the Limping Bear twins (Lainie Basman and Craig Fortier) and extreme amounts of sprinting by Winded Bear (Jenny Chan), Windy Bear (Sarah Weinberger), Window of Opportunity Bear (Laura Pin) and Win Now Bear (Michelle Kidd) brought the crowd to their feet!!
The Care Bears, once down 15-1 now trailed by a score of 15-12 going into the final innings. The Haze reached back for some extra smoke and pulled out to an 18-16 lead with the Care Bears in their final at-bat. But all the rainbows and giggles could not penetrate the wall of fog named Andy Smith at short-stop who stamped out any chance at a backdraft by completing the 2nd of 2 double plays on the night.
It would be the Humber River Haze who would secure their 2nd ever spot in the Field of Dreamers Gold Medal Game and the Credit River Care Bears would go on to play the Don River Don of the Dead for a chance at the Bronze!
Final Score – Humber River 18 – Credit River 16
See playoff 2019 primer here
See the game box scores here
See player stats here
See league standings here
See all-time career statistics file (updated for July 8 2019) here
Laura Pin– see oddities below!
Lainie Basman – becomes 31st player in league history to reach 45 career runs batted in!
Terrance Luscombe– tied for 7th on the all-time list with 14 career triples!
Jenny Chan– currently ranks 5th in league history with 295 career at-bats and is only 5 at-bats shy of joining the 300 at-bat club!
Jarl Gardner– becomes 18th player in league history to reach 85 career singles!
Robyn Letson– see oddities below!
Victoria Barnett– currently ranks 2nd on the single season at-bats list with 81 this season! 4 away from Darren Puscas’ 85 at-bat single season record set in 2017!
Alie Hermanutz– currently tied for 35th on the all-time list with 7 career doubles!
Michelle Kidd– currently tied for 42nd on the all-time list with 6 career doubles!
Craig Fortier – currently tied with Phill Morgan for the league lead in runs batted in this season with 33.
Sarah Weinberger– becomes the 76th player in league history to reach 25 career hits!
Tyler Chartrand- currently tied for 83rd on the all-time list with 21 career hits!
Leah Silverman – see oddities below!
Peter Demakos – currently tied for 11th on the all-time list with 7 career home runs!
Ryan Roantree – becomes 75th player in league history to reach 25 career hits!
Rachele Gottardi -see oddities below!
Joseph Bautista – becomes 27th player in league history to record 90 career hits (91)!
Ro Velasquez Guzman -becomes 23rd player in league history to reach 150 career at-bats (153)!
Jordan Pachciarz- see oddities below!
T Vega – currently tied for 40th on the all-time list with 33 career runs scored!
Jo Jefferson – becomes 8th player in league history to reach 120 career singles!
Samira Banishashemi- becomes 67th player in league history to reach 30 career hits (31)!
Adam Dirks – currently ranks 65th on the all-time list with 32 career hits!
Sarah Peek – becomes 85th player in league history to reach 35 career at-bats (36)!
Alex Brant – see oddities below!
Niloo Golkar- becomes the 30th player in league history to reach 135 career at-bats (136)!
Umar Saeed – currently tied for 14th on the all-time list with 8 career triples!
Robin Smillie – becomes 34th player in league history to reach 120 career at-bats (121)!
Oskar Eliashevsky – currently tied for 42nd on the all-time list with 6 career doubles!
Brianna Greaves – becomes 44th player in league history to reach 60 career hits!
Andy Smith – currently ranks 15th on the all-time list with 121 career hits! Jill Aoki-Barrett – becomes 57th player in league history to reach 40 career hits!
Nav Sidhu – currently ranks 24th on the all-time list with 12 career doubles!
Yogi Acharya- becomes the 7th player in league history to score 100 career runs!
Devin Clancy – becomes the 8th player in league history to reach 250 career at-bats!
Annelies Cooper – currently ranks 12th on the all-time list with 158 career hits!
Ryan Hayes – see oddities below!
Paulina Rousseau – currently tied for 69th on the all-time list with 13 career runs batted in!
Krysta Williams – becomes 69th player in league history to reach 50 career at-bats!
Colin Hastings – 9 triples this season ranks 2nd on the single season records behind Darren Puscas’ incredible 12 in 2017!
Kaleigh MacGregor-Bales – becomes 68th player in league history to reach 50 career at-bats (51)!
Luke Fox – becomes 67th player in league history to reach 30 career hits (31)!
Johann Juarez – becomes 3rd player in league history to reach 240 career hits!
Jasmine Irwin – currently leads all sub players this season with 12 at-bats!
Rachele Gottardi (Don River) becomes the 40th player in league history to hit a home run!
ONE HUNDRED CLUB
Laura Pin (Credit River) becomes the 42nd player in league history to reach 100 career at-bats (101). Congratulations Laura!
NEEDS A CYCLE FOR MILESTONE JACKPOT
Ryan Hayes (Garrison Creek) is 4 hits away from becoming the 2nd player in league history to reach 300 career hits! If Ryan were to hit for the cycle in the next game (i.e. one single, double, triple, and home run apiece) he would even out his stats to have 180 career singles (1st all-time), 80 career doubles (2nd all-time), 20 career triples (T-3rd all time), and 20 career home runs (6th all time)!
No, it’s not a dating course. Robyn Letson (Credit River) and Alex Brant (Humber River) become the 15th and 16th players respectively to reach 100 career singles (101)!
THE MIGHTY 15s!
Teammates Leah Silverman (Don River) and Jordan Pachciarz become the 109th and 110th player in league history to reach 15 career at-bats!