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Grey Lions will battle Paladins for AWCBA supremacy

Game 1 in best of three goes Sunday, Aug. 28, in Westlock at 6 p.m.
WES - Grey Lions IMG_2519
Grey Lions’ Kevin Ginger watches his two-run home run exit Keller Field during the club’s 12-2, five-inning win over the St. Albert Cardinals in Game 3 of their semifinal series played Aug. 23 in Westlock. The Grey Lions will face the Sturgeon Paladins for the AWCBA title, with Game 1 slated for Sunday, Aug. 28, at Keller Field. Game time is 6 p.m.

WESTLOCK - The Westlock Grey Lions will face an all-too-familiar foe this Sunday, Aug. 28, in their quest for an Alberta West Central Baseball Association title.

The Sturgeon Paladins are the final hurdle standing in the way of the Grey Lions after they scored a five-inning, 12-2 win over the St. Albert Cardinals in Game 3 of their best-of-three semifinal series played Aug. 23 in Westlock. The fourth-place Cardinals scored a surprising 10-3 win over the top-seeded Grey Lions in Game 1 played Aug. 16 in Westlock, while in Game 2, played Aug. 21 in St. Albert, the Grey Lions staved off elimination with a 17-9 victory.

Tuesday night’s game turned in the top of the third inning as the Cardinals were able to tie the contest 2-2, then loaded the bases with only one out. But Grey Lions hurler Kevin Ginger managed to get out of the jam and in the bottom of the inning, player/manager Sheldon McConaghy led-off with a solid double. Third baseman Sean Beaudoin was next up and was able to cash in McConaghy on a bloop single, which ended up being the game-winning run. Ginger stepped to the plate next and drilled a two-run home run over the left field wall which left the Cards stunned as they were mercied just two innings later. 

“We got on a roll and were able to just keep adding on after that,” said McConaghy.

Now the Grey Lions, who went 14-3 and at one point in the year rattled off 10-straight wins, will face the second-place Paladins, a club they went 1-1 against during the regular season. The two teams have recent playoff history, with the Paladins sweeping the Grey Lions in the 2021 AWCBA final and the 2019 semifinal — the league, which features players ages 30-plus, took 2020 off due to COVID-19.

First pitch in Game 1 is slated for 6 p.m. this Sunday, Aug. 28, in Westlock at Keller Field, while Game 2 will be hosted by the Paladins on Monday, Aug. 29. Game 3, if necessary, is slated to be played Wednesday, Aug. 31, at a location to be determined.

“We want to try and get it all done before the long weekend,” McConaghy added.

George Blais,

George Blais

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