Ace throws no-hitter
Tournament MVP Michael Tomasetta of Kirkland, Que., tossed a no-hitter and smacked a game-winning two-run homer as the McGill Redbirds hammered Dalhousie 8-0 to capture the Canadian Intercollegiate Baseball Association championship in Nepean, Ont., on Sunday.
It was the team's first ever Canadian title and McGill's first national championship by a men's team in any sport since the soccer Redmen won in 1997.
Tomasetta, a 21-year-old southpaw who won the Northern Conference batting title with a .450 average during the regular season, pitched a rain-shortened six-inning gem. The 6-foot-1, 200-pound marketing sophomore struck out eight and walked just three for the first no-hitter in McGill history.
"I didn't know until after the game that it was a 'no-no,'" said Tomasetta. "I thought that they had an infield hit on a ground ball that skipped through a puddle (to shortstop Alex Day) in the fourth but they apparently ruled it an error. Zach (catcher Zachary Schwartz) called a great game and my curveball was working well along with my fastball, which I think was over 85 (miles per hour on the radar gun)."
Tomasetta's fourth-inning homer to right traveled an estimated 350 feet and gave McGill a 2-0 lead. The Redbirds then exploded for six runs in the fifth, sparked by first baseman Eric Mutter's RBI double.
McGill went 5-0 in the six-team tourney, sweeping a rare triple-header Saturday and a doubleheader Sunday. The Redbirds opened on Saturday with a 1-0 win over Atlantic Baptist University, followed by victories over Ottawa (4-2), Dalhousie (8-2) and Durham College (8-7), respectively, heading into Sunday's rematch with Dalhousie.
The three-day event was shortened by a day as poor weather conditions played havoc with the schedule. The final was played in near-freezing conditions with rain, snow, hail and gusting winds.
"I'm just so proud of the guys," said Ernie D'Alessandro, in his 11th season as field manager of the Redbirds. "We were seeded sixth in this tournament and nobody (outside the team) believed we could do it. Having to win five games in two days was a truly remarkable achievement."
Aside from Tomasetta's tourney MVP award, the only other McGill player honoured was second baseman Jonathan Comeau of Yarmouth, N.S., who earned an All-Canadian selection.
McGill's win marked the fifth CIBA pennant by a Quebec team in the 12-year history of the league. Laval won the league four times, with their last coming in 2002.
PAST CIBA CHAMPIONS
2005 Cape Breton
On the web: