Lights out: pitching duel ends 1-1 in baseball opener

Andrew Murrell steals home in dramatic finish

As one of four returning players to George Brown’s varsity baseball team, Andrew Murrell is key to the team’s success this year. On both the mound and the basepaths in last night’s season opener, he delivered.

The game saw Murrell, a 2015 Ontario Colleges Athletic Association All-Star, pitch seven strong innings at Wishing Well Park. The Humber Hawks were limited to a single run, scored by third baseman Matthew Stoddart following a Huskies fielding error in the third inning.

In the bottom of the seventh with time running out, Murrell came through again. After a bunt by Nicolas Giarcola allowed him to reach third, Murrell ended his night with the dramatic finish of stealing home plate.

Humber closed out the inning shortly thereafter, but with the lights turning off in mere minutes, the 1-1 game was suspended and will resume on Sept. 26.

“Funnily enough, we tried to do something like that last year, it didn’t work with the same guy”, said Huskies head coach Mark Cotgrave. “We’re hoping that maybe this is an omen for better things this year, cause he pitched a great game and to steal home to win it. That’s something we’ve got to be pretty excited about.”

The night proved to be a good old-fashioned pitching duel. Humber Hawks starter Daniel Cirillo was clinical, pounding the strike zone and making quick work of Huskies batters.

“It’s tough to say, because the first guy, he threw so well. You got to give credit, and maybe a better barometer as to what type of hitting we’re going to have,” said Cotgrave. “Give it three or four games, and then we’ll get a better sense.”

In 2015, George Brown lost all four games against Humber by a combined score of 41-4. That was last season, and for Cotgrave, the message moving forward is two-fold: have confidence in being able to play with any opponent, and don’t be satisfied with this emotional high.

“You could easily think ‘Okay, we’ve accomplished something so we don’t have to worry about anything else.’ We want to make it like this was the beginning and not just some sort of moment in time.”

On Sunday, the Huskies dropped two games in doubleheader against Durham College, losing 15-1 in the first game, and 16-4 in the second. The Durham Lords are 4-0 for the season after similarly trouncing Seneca 12-0 and 5-0 in their opening games.


Lights out: pitching duel ends 1-1 in baseball opener