CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – The P.E.I. Junior Islanders leapfrogged the Fredericton Royals Saturday by sweeping a doubleheader from them in convincing fashion.
Both games at Memorial Field were shortened due to the mercy rule.
P.E.I. improved to 10-10 and jumped into third place, 1.5 games ahead of Fredericton (9-12). The wins are crucial as the Islanders look to avoid playing in the four-versus-five first-round playoff series with the Saint John Alpines.
Brett Hicken allowed only one hit and Connor Jones got the final two outs in a 10-0 blowout in five innings in the opener. Hicken struck out five and walked three, allowing only Dan Bertrand's single.
Ryne MacIsaac led a 12-hit Islander attack with three hits and two RBI. Matt Barlow, Riley Gallant and Josh Myers each had two hits while Chasse Gallant, Jed Noonan and Jayden MacLean each had one.
Ryan Hornibrook took the loss for the Royals.
The Islander bats continued to churn out hits in Game 2, this time stroking 14 singles off Royals pitchers Mike Leonard and Isaac Edwards in a 12-2 victory in six innings.
Myers continued his hot hitting with four hits and two RBI. Barlow chipped in two more hits and MacIsaac, Noonan, Connor McGregor, Johnny Arsenault, Riley Gallant, Gavin Hickey, John Savidant and Elijah Hood all had one.
Chandler Laporte went four strong innings for the win while Nolan Hicken threw two scoreless frames to close it out.
The Islanders travel to the Port City to take on the Alpines Sunday and also have a make-up doubleheader with first-place Metro Mudcats in Moncton, yet to be scheduled.