Oxford County had four win gold at the Canada Summer Games for men's fastball
Derek Hyde, Liam Laforest, Jake Wiffen and Isaiah Whetstone (from left) were all part of Team Ontario men's fastball squad that won gold at the Canada Summer Games in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Ontario went 7-2 in the round robin and won both playoff games, including 4-1 over Saskatchewan in the finals. Greg Colgan/Woodstock Sentinel-Review/Postmedia Network
Oxford County had four gold medalists at the Canada Summer Games.
Embro’s Isaiah Whetstone, Bright’s Liam Laforest and Tavistock’s Derek Hyde and Jake Wiffen were part of the first place Team Ontario that defeated Team Saskatchewan 4-1 in the finals.
Team Ontario went 7-2 in the round robin to place second in the 10 team standings, with Saskatchewan going undefeated in the preliminary round. Ontario had 83 runs scored to 19 against.
In their opening playoff game, Ontario beat Saskatchewan 11-1 to clinch a spot in the championship game, where they met Saskatchewan once again.
Ontario opened the tournament with a 6-4 loss to Saskatchewan July 29 then beat Quebec 14-10. On the second day, they won 19-0 in a mercy against New Brunswick and lost 4-3 to Quebec then won 11-4 over P.E.I. and 3-0 against Manitoba on the third day. They defeated Newfoundland and Labradour 10-2 and Alberta 10-1, while winning their last round robin game 9-2 against Nova Scotia.
During the tournament, the four Oxford County players were key to Ontario’s success at the plate, on the mount and in the field.
Wiffen was Ontario’s leadoff batter for most of the tournament and went 17-for-36 as one of the top hitters in the Games. He had 11 runs batted in to go with three home runs, six runs scored, two walks and a stolen base. Hyde went 1-for-7 with an RBI and run and was also the starting catcher for the majority of the innings.
Whetstone went 12-for-26 with seven RBIs, a home run, five runs scored and three walks while primarily playing first base. Laforest pulled triple duty as a pitcher, batter and pitch runner throughout Ontario’s schedule. On the mound he threw five innings with only one earned run and six hits allowed and collected two strikeouts. On offence, he went 4-for-11 with two home runs, five RBIs, seven runs and two walks.