Stealers fifth at fastpitch provincials

The Chilliwack Stealers started on fire at the U14 fastpitch provincials, settling for a fifth place finish in Surrey.

The Chilliwack’s Stealers finished fifth overall the U-14 fastpitch provincials, held last weekend in Surrey.

The Stealers represented the Fraser Valley East district in a field of 16 elite teams.

Chilliwack opened Friday morning against the Central Saanich Extreme Sliders, taking a 10-1 decision. In a much tighter game against the New Westminster Royals Friday afternoon, the Stealers prevailed 3-1. Chilliwack stayed unbeaten Saturday morning, topping the View Royal Killer Bees 13-6.

They beat the Nanaimo Nitros 8-7 Saturday afternoon to finish the round-robin at 4-0.

The Stealers overcame adversity in their first playoff game. They trailed the South Surrey Chicks 6-1 before the bats got going.

Chilliwack was within one run (7-6) in the final inning when a homerun by Amanda Marshall and back-to-back slap-bunts by Nicola Janzen and Ashley Guthrie gave them an 8-7 lead. Chilliwack piled on four insurance runs and escaped with a 12-9 win.

The Stealers finally stumbled against the Causton Koyotes, losing 9-4.

Chilliwack faced New Westminster next.

Hits by Guthrie, Kiana Kelly, Jessica Tejszerski and Caitlyn Fedrau keyed a second inning rally that put the Stealers up 3-0.

But the Royals chipped away, taking a 5-3 lead in the final inning. Marshall stemmed the bleeding, striking out two New Westminster batters to keep the game within reach.

Chilliwack had two on base in the final inning, but the Royals came up with a defensive gem to snuff out the rally.