WESTLOCK - It’s win-or-go-home for the senior Red Lions, known locally as the Grey Lions, whose backs are against the wall in their opening round Alberta West Central Baseball Association semifinal playoff series versus the St. Albert Cardinals.
The clubs are tied at a game apiece in their best-of-three series after the fourth-place Cardinals scored a surprising 10-3 win over the top-seeded Grey Lions in Game 1 played Aug. 16 in Westlock. The Grey Lions, who posted a stellar 14-3 regular-season record to lead the 10-team AWCBA, staved off elimination with a 17-9 victory in Game 2 in St. Albert Aug. 21.
The third-and-deciding game is slated for 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 23, in Westlock at Keller Field.
After opening the season at 2-2, the club rattled off 10-straight wins and ended their year with a 19-11 triumph over the Edmonton Grey Jays Aug. 5 and a tight 6-5 victory over the Edmonton Heat Aug. 7.
Last season the Grey Lions finished the regular season in second place with an 8-5 record, then routed the third-place St. Albert Cardinals two-straight in the league semifinal series. In the two-game championship final held at the end of August 2021, the Grey Lions fell in two-straight to the Sturgeon Paladins — the clubs previously met in the 2019 AWCBA semifinal, which also went 2-0 to the Paladins. The league, which features players ages 30-plus, was shuttered in 2020 due to the COVID-10 pandemic.