Shorthanded Sr. Cards drop 10-1 decision to Tecumseh Sr.



By Ron Giofu


It was a game the Amherstburg Cardinals senior team will be putting behind them quickly.

The Cardinals dropped a 10-1 decision to the Tecumseh Sr. team last Wednesday night at the Libro Centre but many of the Cardinals’ regulars weren’t even there. At least six regular players missed the game due to vacations or other commitments.

Amherstburg called up players from younger levels of baseball as well as players from other leagues to help fill out their roster last Wednesday.

Tecumseh scored two in each of the first three innings to go up 6-0 and added three more in the fifth to extend their lead to 9-0. John Freer, one of the players who filled in last Wednesday night, knocked home the only Amherstburg run in the bottom of the fifth inning with a force out.

Amherstburg second baseman Nick Price fields a throw as a Tecumseh baserunner steals the base. Amherstburg was without six players last Wednesday night and lost 10-1.

Tecumseh added one more run in the top of the seventh inning to round out the scoring.

“It was a good game. Both teams played really well,” said Freer. “They had a perfect game going into the deep innings but we got the bats going a little bit.”

Matt Bassingthwaighte broke up the perfect game with a lead-off single in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Freer played shortstop last Wednesday night and while he has been playing recreational softball in recent seasons, he believes “I held my own.”

It was the final regular season home game for the senior Cardinals, as they won’t be on the premier diamond at the Libro Centre again until the Essex County Senior League playoffs in September. In the meantime, the Cardinals (9-7) finish with six straight road games including a Wednesday night game in Woodslee against their senior team. They also are scheduled to compete in the OBA tournament in Port Lambton Labour Day weekend.


Sr. Cards now 5-4 after recent Essex County Senior League action



By Ron Giofu


The Amherstburg Cardinals senior baseball team won one and lost two in recent game action.

The Sr. Cardinals lone game last week was in Woodslee, where they battled the Woodslee Orioles junior team. The game was a high scoring affair that saw the Orioles defeat the Cardinals 11-10.

The Cardinals, who now have five wins and four losses on the 2018 season, lost 10-1 to Essex June 16 at the Libro Centre. It was a make-up game from a previous rain-out but it turned out to be an off-night for the Cardinals, who made several errors that only compounded their problems.

After Essex built a 5-0 lead in the second inning, the Cardinals scored their only run in the bottom of that inning thanks to an RBI infield hit by Nick Price.

Essex would score three more in the fourth and two more in the sixth and kept Amherstburg off the scoreboard, though the Cardinals would load the bases in the bottom of the seventh inning.

“I don’t think we can make excuses for that game,” said Price, who had three hits on the night. “We need to throw that one under the carpet and forget about it. I think we’ll have a better effort on Tuesday.”

The Cardinals were missing some players against Essex but Price said that was no excuse, noting their numerous errors.

Matt Bassingthwaighte gets a hit during recent game action against the Tecumseh Thunder senior team at the Libro Centre.

“It wasn’t our day,” he said.

While Price had a good game personally, the overall result put a damper his own effort.

“Any time you personally have a good game, it’s a good feeling,” he said. “We still lost the game so that overshadows anything personally.”

The Cardinals played the Tecumseh Sr. team June 13 and came out with an 8-7 victory. Amherstburg squandered a 5-1 lead and trailed 7-5 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning. Matt Bassingthwaighte had an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth and after Price’s infield hit scored the tying run in the seventh, Bassingthwaighte walked with the bases loaded to push home the winning run a few batters later.

“It had its ups and downs,” starting pitcher Mac Ouellette said of the Tecumseh game. “We pulled out the win.”

Amherstburg second baseman Nick Price (2, left) attempts to tag a Tecumseh baserunner during a recent game at the Libro Centre. Amherstburg won the game 8-7.

Ouellette said they have to play complete games, saying they often play well for several innings in a game then get complacent at points.

The Cardinals’ next game is tonight (Wednesday) at the Libro Centre against the Harrow senior team. First pitch is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Amherstburg and the Tecumseh 35+ team are scheduled to play Monday evening on the Willie Horton Field of Dreams at the Corner Ballpark in Detroit. The Corner Ballpark is located on the former Tiger Stadium site.

Most town roads will require rehabilitation within ten years


By Ron Giofu


The town’s roads are OK now, but a lot of work looms on the horizon, according to a consultant.

Kyle Edmunds from Dillon Consulting appeared before town council last Tuesday night and presented an updated roads needs report and while that report deemed the roads to be in “fair” condition, it was also determined that 83 per cent of the town’s roads need to be rehabilitated within ten years.

To combat that problem, the town agreed to a plan that would see $1.41 million committed annually over ten years to road work to help combat the deteriorating road system and get some of the more urgent projects completed.

Of the 226.48 kilometres of roads the town controls, about 30.5 per cent need work now while 23.3 per cent need work in the next 1-5 years. About 29 per cent need work within 6-10 years while the remained don’t need work for beyond a decade.

Less than four per cent of Amherstburg’s roads are considered to be in “excellent” condition, as compared to 20.16 per cent in LaSalle and 15.6 per cent in Tecumseh. As for roads in “good” condition, there are 23.38 per cent of roads in Amherstburg in that category as compared to 45.82 per cent in LaSalle and 29.7 per cent in Tecumseh.

Amherstburg has 16.75 per cent of its roads classified in “fairly good” condition with just over 22 per cent of LaSalle’s roads in that category. Tecumseh has 25.5 per cent of its roads classified as “fairly good.”

As for roads in “fair” condition, 27.72 per cent of Amherstburg’s roads fall in that category, as compared to 11.31 per cent in LaSalle and 23.9 per cent in Tecumseh. Amherstburg has nearly 29 per cent of its roads classified as “poor,” as compared to less than one per cent in LaSalle and 5.3 per cent in Tecumseh.

Tecumseh has 181.4 kilometres of road while LaSalle has 187.56 kilometres. They were used by Dillon Consulting as comparators as the firm did roads needs studies in those two municipalities as well over the last few years.

Expect to see more construction signs over the next decade as the town’s road system requires a lot of work. Meloche Road (pictured here, earlier this summer before the road re-opened) is one of the more recent projects the town has undertaken.

Councillor Leo Meloche wondered why the entire focus was on repairing roads that need it now as he said some priority should be put on some of the roads in the 1-5 year category. The poor roads are already poor but the roads in the 1-5 year category will soon join them if not tended to quicker.

“We’re always chasing our tail,” said Meloche.

Councillor Diane Pouget said she didn’t want residents to think it was a “doom and gloom” situation, and added Amherstburg has more roads than Tecumseh and LaSalle.

“That does make a difference,” she said.

Provincial downloading also made a difference, she suggested.

“I think the municipalities started getting into trouble when the province started downloading to us,” she said.

Councillor Rick Fryer pointed out chunks of cement are coming off of Angstrom Dr. and Victoria St. S. is also deteriorating. There are heavily travelled roads like Concession 2 North that are also in disrepair, calling that road “a thoroughfare to LaSalle. It’s one of the worst roads but people use it.”

Traffic counts should not be the only factor in choosing where road projects should be done, Fryer added, as smaller roads need attention too. He said the town should focus on roads instead of “not needed purchases.”

CAO John Miceli called an increase to $1.41 million annually “significant” and said challenges will be ensuring there are enough contractors to do the work and what prices the town gets when projects are put to tender.

“I would suggest the market will indicate where we are going to be,” he said.

Miceli added he would like to see $120,000 in the crack seal program budget to prolong the life of some of the roads.

Councillor Jason Lavigne said the current council has done a lot of road repairs in its first three years.

“I think this council spent more on roads than the last four councils combined,” he said, noting Texas Road and Meloche Road have been upgraded.

Lavigne wanted to know “what will keep politics out of this” when choosing where and when projects get done. Edmunds said all roads have been classified based on a pavement condition index (PCI) and that shows what roads are in the worst condition.

Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale also stated that more roads have been repaired this term whereas “in the past, we didn’t do so much.

“Everyone has seen the number of roads that have been fixed in the last little while,” said DiPasquale.

The last complete roads needs study was done by Dillon Consulting in 2003 with a condition assessment update done in 2013.

Sr. Cards lose to Walker Homesites, beat Tecumseh Sr.



By Ron Giofu


The Cardinals’ first game of the week was a dismal 11-2 loss at the hands of Walker Homesites last Wednesday night.

The game was close through five innings as Walker Homesites put up two in the top half of the first inning, which was answered by a Josh Sikich RBI double in the bottom of the inning.
Walker Homesites followed that up with two more in the fifth to go up 4-1. After Amherstburg’s half of the inning, two from the visitors’ side were ejected – including a Walker Homesites’ fan.

Walker Homesites put up five more in the sixth inning and two more in the seventh. Amherstburg got its second run in the bottom of the sixth inning when Cole Lepine’s infield hit scored Matt Bassingthwaighte.

Defense was a key part of the game, as Amherstburg made five errors including a few dropped fly balls in the outfield. On the other hand, Walker Homesites made several nice plays in the field which prevented the Cardinals from scoring more runs.

Cole Lepine (9) slides into third base during last Wednesday night’s Essex County Senior League game at the Libro Centre. Amherstburg lost this game but won Monday night in Tecumseh.

Cole Lepine (9) slides into third base during last Wednesday night’s Essex County Senior League game at the Libro Centre. Amherstburg lost this game but won Monday night in Tecumseh.

Amherstburg manager Dennis Ouellette said they were missing five key players and it showed.

“You can tell that by what happened,” he said.

Mac Ouellette, who played first base and pitched in the loss, said they simply made too many errors.

“It was all errors,” he said. “We didn’t hit either. We’ll bounce back on Sunday.”

Mac Ouellette added “I’d rather get beat playing good defense and playing good ball.” He added that “it’s grind time as we’re trying to get second place for the playoffs and build for the OBA’s.”

The Cardinals were scheduled to play Sunday afternoon in Essex but that game was postponed.

Amherstburg capped the week Monday night at Lacasse Park in Tecumseh and beat the Tecumseh Sr. team 6-3. The win improved the Cardinals’ record to 10-8 on the Essex County Senior League schedule.

The next game for the Cardinals is Friday at 8:30 p.m. against Walker Homesites. That game is scheduled for Soulliere Field in Windsor.

Sr. Cards lose one, win one over the past week



By Ron Giofu


The Amherstburg Cardinals senior baseball team lost a game and won a game over the past week.

The Cardinals first game of the week was an error-filled game against the Tecumseh Sr. team last Wednesday night at the Libro Centre.

Zack O’Donnell had a solid effort on the mound but mistakes in the field kept innings alive and it came back to bite Amherstburg and contributed to their 8-5 loss. The Thunder scored in every inning but the second, fifth and seventh, as they put up two runs in the first, two in the third, one in the fourth and three in the sixth inning.

Sr. Cardinals third baseman Brady Levack (12) tries to tag a Tecumseh base runner during July 5 action at the Libro Centre.

Sr. Cardinals third baseman Brady Levack (12) tries to tag a Tecumseh base runner during July 5 action at the Libro Centre.

The three in the sixth proved to be the difference as Amherstburg had crawled back in the fifth inning, tying the game at five. Errors proved costly for Tecumseh as well in the bottom of the fifth. A pair of bases loaded errors resulted in four runs scoring – two off of each error – with Brendon Seguin driving in the fifth run with a single.

Brady Levack went two-for-three in the game for the Sr. Cardinals.

“We made too many errors,” said coach Cliff Bechard. “That cost us the game.”

Bechard praised O’Donnell and said he pitched well.

“He just didn’t have the support behind him,” he said.

The inability to score in any inning but the fifth was the result of not getting the key hit when they needed it, Bechard added. The Cardinals were able to put runners in scoring position, but couldn’t drive them home in most of the innings.

“We just couldn’t get that key hit. That was costly for us.”

Amherstburg centrefielder Cody Brown reaches up to make a catch.

Amherstburg centrefielder Cody Brown reaches up to make a catch.

The Cardinals were on the road Sunday and won a high-scoring affair in Leamington. Amherstburg won an 11-10 decision.

Amherstburg now has seven wins and five losses on the 2017 season.

The Cardinals have only one more regular season home game left, and that is not until July 26 when they host Walker Homesites. In the meantime, they have three straight games in Woodslee including a Friday night game against the Woodslee 35+ team. They are back in Woodslee Sunday for a game against the Woodslee Sr. team and play the Woodslee Jr. team next Tuesday night.