Amherstburg resident part of Leamington team’s OBA title victory


Special to the RTT


Joe Funkenhauser of Amherstburg won his first OBA championship earlier this month as a member of the Leamington Junior Barons.

The Leamington Junior Barons defeated Woodslee 9-7 to claim the OBA Junior ‘B’ championship in Port Lambton Aug. 12.

Funkenhauser, a talented third baseman, played a major role with the Barons this season and in the provincial tournament.

His seventh inning bases loaded double against Listowel advanced the Barons to the final on Sunday. The Barons were trailing 8-2 in the bottom of the seventh inning, rallied back setting the stage for Funkenhauser’s late game heroics.

Joe Funkenhauser of Amherstburg won his first OBA championship earlier this month as a member of the Leamington Junior Barons. (Submitted photo)

“Joe was our only player not from Leamington and he fit in well with everyone,” said coach Terry Misener. “He played every game this season and did well as a first year Junior.  That game winning double was something to see, it ignited quite a celebration.”

Funkenhauser joined Leamington when it became apparent Amherstburg would not be fielding a Junior team this season.

Chris Lamotte and John Wall are the other coaches.

The OBA championship was a three-peat for ten of the Barons and three of the coaches. They were all members of the 2016 and 2017 Midget OBA ‘B’ winning teams and have now added the 2018 Junior title to their resumes.

Sr. Cardinals lose 5-3 decision in Woodslee



By Ron Giofu


The Amherstburg Cardinals baseball team are now 9-8 on the 2018 Essex County Senior League season after a loss in Woodslee last Wednesday night.

The Cardinals fell 5-3 to the Woodslee Sr. team in a game that saw four home runs on the night, two by each team.

The game was scoreless until the bottom of the third inning when Woodslee scored two off Amherstburg starting pitcher Tristan Bouchat.

The Cardinals quickly tied it with two of their own in the top of the fourth inning. Brad Lepine led off the inning with a solo home run to left field with a Cole Lepine single later in the inning driving home Mac Ouellette.

Tristan Bouchat is congratulated by coach Dennis Ouellette after his sixth inning home run.

The Orioles got lead-off home runs in the fourth and fifth innings, with them ending up with two runs in the fifth. Bouchat helped his own cause with home run in the sixth inning but the Cardinals could not cut the deficit further.

Brad Lepine said they played well and had some good innings but it wasn’t enough.

“(Woodslee) had a good game too,” he said. “They outplayed us. We just didn’t have enough.”

As for his home run, Brad said “it felt good” when he hit it.

“Right off the bat, I knew it was going to be a home run,” he said.

The loss was the second in a row for the senior Cardinals and third in the last four games, but Brad said they have been battling injuries and player shortages in the last few games.

“We’re not playing badly,” he said. “We’re just short of guys. It’s hard to play with nine players.”

Cole Lepine strokes a single during Amherstburg’s 5-3 loss in Woodslee last Wednesday night.

As the regular season is winding down, Brad said he is confident they will do well.

“We’ll be there at the end,” he said.

The Sr. Cardinals have two road games this weekend. They play the Tecumseh 35+ team Saturday night at 7 p.m. at Cullen Field in Windsor then play the Tecumseh Sr. team Sunday night at Lacasse Park in Tecumseh, also at 7 p.m.

Sr. Cards in action twice last week



By Ron Giofu


The Amherstburg Cardinals senior team was in action twice over the past week.

In their first game of the week, the Sr. Cardinals knocked off the Harrow Blues senior team 8-6 at the Libro Centre.

The Cardinals appeared to be in fine shape early, taking a 4-0 lead in the first inning with the big blow being a Brendan Seguin two-run double. However, the home team wouldn’t score in the next four innings, which allowed Harrow to take the lead after the Blues scored two in the third inning and three more in the sixth.

However, the Cardinals would tack on four more runs in their half of the sixth inning to pull ahead 8-5. Harrow added one more run in the seventh, but Amherstburg held on for the victory.

Amherstburg’s Mac Ouellette slides into third base during last Wednesday night’s game against Harrow at the Libro Centre.

Catcher Matt Bassingthwaighte had two RBI’s in the game and said they got a lead early but weren’t able to score in the middle portion of the game. When Harrow fought back and took the lead, “it gave us the motivation to get our heads back in the game.”

Bassingthwaighte said this year has been a struggle for him.

“I’m glad to finally get out of my slump with a couple of hits tonight,” he said after last Wednesday’s game.

The Cardinals have been “hit and miss” this season, he added, with some games seeing them play well and other games have numerous errors.
“It’s been a little bit of a roller coaster this year,” he said.

With the win, Amherstburg improved to 6-4 on the 2018 Essex County Senior League season.

The Cardinals were in Detroit Monday night for a game against the Tecumseh 35+ team. It was scheduled to be at the Willie Horton Field of Dreams at the Corner Ballpark, located on the former Tiger Stadium site. No result was available as of press time.

(UPDATE July 4/18 – The senior Cardinals won Monday night’s game 9-1 to improve their record to 7-4.)

The lone game on the schedule for the senior Cardinals this week is Sunday at home against the Woodslee senior team. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.

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.

Sr. Cardinals drop 8-6 decision to Woodslee Jr. team



By Ron Giofu


The Amherstburg Cardinals senior baseball team lost a game last Tuesday night against a team they likely should have defeated.

The Cardinals were on the short end of an 8-6 decision, which dropped their overall record to nine wins and seven losses on the 2017 Essex County Senior League season. It was only the second win of the season for the Woodslee Jr. team (2-13).

Amherstburg’s Brad Lepine slides in at home plate in an attempt to score a run against the Woodslee Jr. team.

Amherstburg’s Brad Lepine slides in at home plate in an attempt to score a run against the Woodslee Jr. team.

Amherstburg trailed 8-2 after five innings and tried to mount a comeback but fell just short. The Cardinals put up three runs in the top of the sixth inning, the first run being Cole Lepine scoring from third base on a wild pitch. After Matt Lepine scored on an error, Nick Price crossed the plate with the third run of the inning as he scored on a ground-out.

The Cardinals scored another run in the seventh inning as Cody Brown scored on a wild pitch, but Amherstburg couldn’t get any closer.

“That was tough,” said Cardinals manager Dennis Ouellette, “especially after the way we played the last couple of games.”

The Cardinals had split a doubleheader against Woodslee’s 35-and-over team then beat a strong Woodslee Sr. team.

“We played great games lately,” he said. “This one was not there.”

Cole Lepine singles to left field. Woodslee won the game 8-6.

Cole Lepine singles to left field. Woodslee won the game 8-6.

Ouellette pointed out the Cardinals loaded the bases twice with one out against the Woodslee Jr. team but couldn’t score a run in either instance.

“We definitely didn’t get timely hitting,” said Ouellette. “We probably didn’t get more than five or six hits. We should have got more than that.”

The Sr. Cardinals return home this Wednesday night for a 7:30 p.m. game at the Libro Centre against Walker Homesites. They are also scheduled to play the Essex Jr. team in Essex Sunday at 1 p.m. The Cardinals also have a Monday night game scheduled against the Tecumseh Sr. team next Monday night at Lacasse Park in Tecumseh starting at 7 p.m.