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The Victoria HarbourCats are ripping up the West Coast League like never before, well almost. After Sunday night’s game, they share the league record of consecutive wins with the Wenatchee AppleSox at 14.
Fascination with sport is many things; high drama and irony often make compelling storylines. It just so happens that tonight the HarbourCats have the opportunity to own the record as they visit the AppleSox for a three-game set.
“Any time you get close to a record, it’s special, and for our organization, it’s been an openly stated goal of doing all we can to give our fans and this community a playoff team and a chance at a championship. We’re moving the right direction and need to keep the same focus. No one will take us lightly anymore, that’s for sure — we’ll have targets on us. Everyone wants to be the one to stop a streak,” said Managing Partner, Jim Swanson.
Saturday, the team won its 13th consecutive game with a 5-1 win over the visiting Kitsap BlueJackets. Sunday, they won again, 6-5, which means with one more win, they will have broken the WCL record for number of consecutive victories at 15.
In Saturday’s game the HarbourCats delivered from the hot hand of Will McAffer, last weeks’ WCL pitcher of the week, who struck out eight, while allowing just one run on two hits after six innings pitched.
McAffer, who is from Vancouver, was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds this year.
On Sunday, the BlueJackets wanted to win in the worst way; they have lost a league-leading nine games by just one run this season. During the fourth inning, they put the scare into Royal Athletic Park fans, with HarbourCats starter Josh Mitchell on the mound, the BlueJackets scored four runs on six hits. In one inning, down 4-0, they tied the score.
After 11 innings, the HarbourCats eked out the record-tying win, but the BlueJackets had out-hit the HarbourCats 10-8. It was close.
Greg Casper was credited with the win, pitching two innings, allowing just no runs, while Casey Costello threw for five innings, allowing one run off of two hits.
“It’s a year-round effort by our coaches, our staff, and our network in the college baseball world, and it’s always fun to see things result in more wins than losses,” added Swanson. “It’s a long season and it’s important to re-set every day, and we know every team in this league can win on any given day. Look at Kitsap, their record had them at the bottom of the league, but we had to work very hard for each of those wins, one in extra innings.”
The HarbourCats sit atop the North Division and WCL standings with a record of 14-3 for an .824 winning percentage. The first place team in the South Division, the Covallis Knights hold the second best record at 11-7 and a .611 winning percentage.
The HarbourCats next play at R.A.P. on June 30th, with a three-game set against the Kelowna Falcons.