The University of the Fraser Valley Cascades are the 2019 Canadian College Baseball Conference champions — and the team won the crown in the most dramatic of fashion.
The seven-team CCBC championship tournament was held at Norbrock Stadium in Kamloops from Thursday through Sunday, utilizing a double-elimination setup — a team would be eliminated once it lost two games.
Fraser Valley fell in its first game, dropping a 7-4 decision to the lower-ranked University of Calgary Dinos, meaning the Cascades could not afford to lose another game until the best-of-three-final.
Fraser Valley regrouped and won four games in a row, including three on Friday.
On Friday, the Cascades won 7-0 over Vancouver Island University, 8-4 over Calgary and 12-11 over Lethbridge’s Prairie Baseball Academy.
That last victory set up a Saturday game against Thompson Rivers University, with the winner advancing to the final against Okanagan College Coyotes and the loser eliminated. Fraser Valley prevailed 9-4.
In the best-of-three final against Okanagan College of Kelowna — a rematch of last year’s CCBC championship — Fraser Valley emerged with a 2-1 series win, winning the first game 6-4, dropping the second match 7-5 and winning the third contest 13-2.
It was Fraser Valley’s first title in its third season in the CCBC.
"This has been probably the craziest tournament I've ever been a part of," Cascades coach Jordan Lennerton told UFV Athletics. "This group of guys rallied together and battled for their life. Their grit, their passion to play, and their unity is what got us this championship."
Kamloops Minor Baseball Association product Riley Jepson, who plays for the Cascades, won league awards for boasting the top batting average (.405) and tying for the most home runs (six) in the regular season.
2019 - University of Fraser Valley Cascades
2018- Okanagan College Coyotes
2017- Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2016- Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2015 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2014 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2013 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2012 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2011 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2010 - Vancouver Island Baseball Institute Mariners
2009 - Thompson Rivers University WolfPack
2008 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2007 - Thompson Rivers University WolfPack
2006 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2005 - Thompson Rivers University WolfPack
2004 - Prairie Baseball Academy Dawgs
2003 - Kwantlen University College Eagles
2002 - Capilano Blues