The Armena Royals offence continued to struggle, but pitching and defence stayed steady as the Royals made up for Friday’s squeaker of a loss to take back one in Bardo Tuesday night, 3-1.
Ian Sherbaniuk picked up his fourth win of the season, giving up just three hits, enroute to a complete-game victory.
Doug Morris notched two of the four Armena hits off Bardo’s Ryan Oleson who was equal, if not better, than Sherbaniuk on the night. Morris drove in Zenan Sherbaniuk in the first who reached on an error. The Royals scored another in the fourth on a double steal as Chad Samoisette stole second and Jason Buzzell slid under the tag at home to make it 2-0.
Despite the lack of hits, both teams threatened throughout the night. Bardo scored one in the fifth and had the bases loaded before the knuckleballer worked out of trouble. Two double-plays on the night assisted Sherbaniuk who struck out five but walked four.
Buzzell picked up a broken-bat single in the seventh to give Armena some insurance and a late 3-1 lead. Sherbaniuk got the first two outs of the inning, however, the veteran hurler then walked, beaned and walked another to load the bases with dangerous clean-up hitter Ken Braget coming to the plate.
Sherbaniuk and Braget battled in a eight-pitch at-bat but Sherbaniuk prevailed to end the game and give the Royals their fifth win of the season.
The Royals now return home Thursday against the red-hot Leduc Milleteers in a game for first place. Game time is 7 p.m.