The 2008 Can-Am League post season has wrapped up, and this year's champions have been crowned; congratulations to the Sussex Skyhawks, who defeated the Quebec City Capitales in a 3-0 sweep in the best of 5 series. The Skyhawks, who call the 4,300 seat Skylands Park in Augusta, New Jersey home, had to win on the road in front of the Quebec City fans at the Stade Municipale.
The Skyhawks finished the first half of the season with a 25-22 record, 6 games behind first place Quebec City. A strong second half of the season, and an overall record of 52 wins and 42 losses, sent the 'hawks into the League's 4 team playoff format. After Quebec City knocked off the Atlantic City Surf 3-1, and Sussex defeated the Worcester Tornadoes by the same tally, the stage was set for the Finals. With victories of 3-2 (10 innings), and 8-6 at home, the Skyhawks opened up a 10-1 lead in game 3 before Quebec City could get their bats going, and went on to win 10-5 to take the series.
There was more good news for the Skyhawks, after two dismal seasons, they are not only League Champions, Manager Hal Lanier has been voted Manager of the Year by league managers and media representatives. This was the Skyhawks first playoff appearance, as they improved by 18 wins from the previous season. The Sussex turnaround should be seen as a ray of hope for the fans here in Ottawa. Perhaps next year the Rapidz can build on their 31-63 record, as they establish themselves in season two.
There was some good news for the fans in Quebec City, Les Capitales were named Organization of the Year for the first time in voting by league managers and the media. "It is a real honour to be recognized by the other teams of the Can-Am League," Capitales General Manager Alexandre Harvey is quoted as saying at the Can-Am League web site, ( www.canamleague.com ). He went on to say, "I want to share this award with my colleagues and employees. Obviously, we have no control on the team performance, so this is kind of a championship for us." Felicitations to Mr. Harvey and the Capitales staff for an outstanding season.
Hopefully, the next Can-Am League article here at The Voice of Sport will be regarding expansion to Montreal. In an interview for the Main Street newspaper, ( www.laurentianlife.com ), league Commissioner Miles Wolff told me he was hoping to make an announcement in the next 4-5 months. With any luck, a decision will come before Spring Training. Have a great sports day everyone.