Miners complete sweep of Champions with 6-1 victory
OTTAWA – The Ottawa Champions were unable to build off of a fierce, albeit failed, comeback attempt from the night before, losing 6-1 to the Sussex County Miners on Sunday.
Down 6-2 at one point on Saturday, the Champions fought back and made it 7-6 heading into the ninth, ultimately ending the game with runners stranded on every base. Instead of building off that momentum, the team came out flat and were unable to give Jared Mortensen the run support to stay in the ball game.
Champions manager Sébastien Boucher was noticeably frustrated with his team’s effort after being swept at home by the first-place Miners.
“It was a terrible series,” said Boucher to open up the post-game press conference. “We don’t make any adjustments hitting, we don’t make any adjustments anywhere, it seems like. They had a guy on the mound who had almost a 7.00 ERA and he threw a complete game. Can’t really say much about that.”
Mortensen pitched 6 2/3 innings for the Champions, striking out five and walking three with three earned runs on six hits.
Mortensen’s performance was pretty well the only thing that Boucher was satisfied with.
“He did what he normally does,” said Boucher. “He gives us a chance to win a ball game and we never give him any support.”
Malik Collymore went 2-for-4 for Ottawa but only three other Champions, Jiandido Tromp, Brian Portelli and Nick DeTringo, were credited with a hit.
A two-run homer from Nate Coronado in the eighth inning off of Kida De La Cruz made it 5-0 for Miners and effectively closed the door on a potential Champions comeback. Maikol Gonzalez drove in Jordan Caillouet in the bottom of the eighth to make it 5-1, but the Miners got it back in the ninth on a sac fly from Kalian Sams.
Sussex opened the scoring on a groundout to second from Cito Culver that allowed Nate Coronado to score from third. They added another run in the sixth on a similar play to make it 2-0.
Boucher said in French that he had to make adjustments himself, as the team’s manager, and when asked about what kind of adjustments he was referring to, he said it would likely be changes to the team’s personnel.
“Only a crazy man keeps putting out the same lineup every day and hoping for different results,” said Boucher. “I mean, we keep making the same mistakes over and over again since the start of the season, so it’s time to move on.”
The Champions hit the road for two back-to-back three-game series, first against the Aigles in Trois-Rivières and then against the Jackals in New Jersey, before returning home to face the Miners in a three-game set.