Congratulations to Irish Junior National Baseball Team on their historic performance at the 18U European Championship Tournament in Zurich, Switzerland.
Ireland outscored the competition 65-17 on their way to a 5-0 record, winning the first gold medal in the history of Ireland’s National Baseball Team program.
- Ireland 18 – Belgium 3
- Ireland 9 – Switzerland 0
- Ireland 10 – Poland 7
- Ireland 16 – Russia 7
- Ireland 12 – Belgium 0
PLAYER OF THE TOURNAMENT: Kevin Brady (IRL)
Game 1: Ireland Defeats Belgium, 18-3
Ireland got off to a quick start, dismantling the Belgian Junior National Team by a score of 18-3. Conor Nicholson went 5 for 6 with three doubles, two stolen bases, and four runs scored. Meanwhile, starting pitcher Kyle Brady scattered seven hits across seven innings.
Game 2: Ireland Shuts Down Switzerland, 9-0
Up next, Ireland took on host nation Switzerland. The Swiss played a good game, but they were no match for the Irish. Outfielder Gearoid Kennedy led the Irish bats, going 4 for 5 with three stolen bases and two runs scored. Meanwhile, starting pitcher Kevin Brady picked up where his twin brother Kyle left off, throwing five scoreless innings for the win.
Game 3: Late Comeback Lifts Ireland Over Poland, 10-7
In what appeared to be an easy game for the Irish, Ireland found themselves trailing Poland 7-4 after six innings. But Ireland rallied, taking the lead on an RBI triple by Brendan Eaton in the seventh inning. Winning pitcher Ian McNamara came out of the bullpen to shut down Poland in the 7th and 8th innings, before Mark Neville closed the door in the 9th to earn the save. Meanwhile, Aidan O’Brien went 3 for 5 with 2 runs and 4 stolen bases.
The win all but clinched a place in Saturday’s gold medal game, but Ireland still had to play Russia. Although the game had no effect on Ireland’s chances to play in the medal game, Russia still had something to play for…