Coquitlam A’s rode the pitching and bat of Matthew Shanley to earn a spot in this year’s Little League World Series in Williamsport, PA.

The team representing British Columbia took on Diamond Baseball, representing Quebec, in the Canadian Little League Championship game, which was held in Ancaster, Ontario, capping off the 10-day tournament.

Coquitlam got four and two-thirds innings from starting pitcher Shanley who shutdown the high-powered Quebec bats as he struck out 13 of 17 batters that he faced without giving up a hit. He would give up a pair of walks and hit one batter in the game though.

Neither team would get on the board until the bottom of the third. Tory Hutchinson led off the inning with a walk then scored on Nolan Loverin’s double. Loverin then came in on Shanley’s two-run home run for a 3-0 lead.

After recording two outs in the top of the fifth, Shanley was pulled form the game after hitting the maximum pitch count. Timothy Piasentin came into pitch, getting the final two outs of the inning to hold on to the three-run lead.

In the home half of the fifth, Piasentin helped out his cause by hitting a three-run dinger for Coquitlam to take a massive 6-0 lead into the sixth inning.

Needing just three outs, Piasentin remained on the mound looking to close it out. However, you can never count Diamond Baseball out. The first three batters for Quebec got on by way of a dropped third strike, a walk and two singles with Justin Trottier scoring on an Alec Mercier single and Xavier-Raphael Brault coming in on a wild pitch, all before an out was recorded.

Quebec would get one more run across the plate but a line drive by Antoine Portugais was caught to end the game, sending the contingent from British Columbia into a frenzy. Piasentin would earn the save for Coquitlam.

Loverin, Shanley and Kainoah Brankovic would all combine for six of BC’s seven hits in the game with Piasentin cashing in three runs. For Quebec, Alexandre Laurence and Mercier would get the only two hits for their squad.

The victory gives the province of British Columbia their 14th Canadian Little League title in the past 15 years.

Coquitlam will leave the Golden Horseshoe on Sunday to travel to Williamsport for the Little League World series which begins on Thursday, August 15th. The BC squad will play their first game on Friday, taking on Mexico at 6pm.

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