Canadian pitches U.S. team to title

From the KW Record

August 20, 2007


With their familiar-sounding surnames like Wengert, Getz, Lutz and Lechtel echoing from the sound system, it was destiny that the South Lebanon TNT would come to Kitchener from Pennsylvania to find a home away from home.

The TNT ignited for three homers en route to a 4-2 victory over the California Lumberkings, in the International Softball Congress II (second-tier) championship game at the Peter Hallman Ball Yard on Saturday.

Affectionately known as The Deuce, the ISC II tourney is the little brother of the ISC world tournament for senior teams.

Thanks largely to Canadian import pitcher Jeremy Tracey, of Waterville, N.B., South Lebanon becomes the first American entry to win the intermediate title in the event’s six-year history.

Named the 35-team event’s outstanding pitcher, Tracey’s complete-game three-hitter in the final took care of the defence.

His mighty stick, which accounted for a pair of homers and three RBI, provided the necessary offence.

“Our team is mostly all Pennsylvania Dutch,” said TNT field manager Lee Lutz, whose squad amassed a nine-game winning streak in Kitchener. “There’s lots of Mennonites and Amish where we are from, too. It was great coming up here. People here were really nice to us. It was like home a little bit.”

South Lebanon’s third baseman Jay Herr who added a homer in the final was named the tournament’s top hitter. He rang up tournament-leading 16 RBI and batted a glittering .571.

The Bakersfield-based Lumberkings staged a fifth-inning rally, scoring two runs off John Nimmo’s round-tripper. But Tracey retired nine of the next 10 batters he faced.

“We fell a little bit short but we had a pretty good run at it,” said Lumberkings relief pitcher Mike Egerdeen. “That’s the way it goes sometimes.”

Born and raised in Kitchener, Egerdeen, 37, is an electrical contractor based in Maple Ridge, B.C. The Bluevale Collegiate grad is one of three Canucks on the Lumberkings’ roster.

South Lebanon bounced the tourney’s top-seeded Niagara Snappers 4-3 in semifinal play.

Kitchener Outlaws right fielder John Sexton was named to the tournament’s all-star team.

In the ISC’s 19 and under North American championship tournament, McDermott’s of Baltimore, Md., captured the title with an 8-1 win over the Glanworth (Ont.) Gators.

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