The 1972 RABA season ended with a three-play-down format, quarter-final, semi-final, and championship rounds.
In one quarter-final best-two-out-of-three round, the Red Caps defeated Little Anse 16-4 and 11-6. The round of River Bourgeois versus Port Hawkesbury went the distance with Port Hawkesbury winning the first game 9-7, but the River bouncing back to take games two and three by scores of 6-3 and 13-0.
The quarter-final series between the Louisdale Baracos and the St. Peter’s Royals also went the distance. The Baracos took the first game 10-9, St. Peter’s won the second 10-9 and Louisdale prevailed in the final contest 10-6.
The final quarter-final saw the Arichat Triple A’s take D’Escousse Rebels in two games, 12-5 and 6-4. And so the table was set for the two semi-finals: Louisdale versus PDG and River Bourgeois versus Arichat.
River Bourgeois disposed of Arichat in two games: 11-2 and 8-5.
In the second semi-final series, Louisdale disposed of the Red Caps in two games also, but both contests were hard fought and dramatic. In the first game, Tim Boudreau and Alzear Marchand for Petit de Grat each hit solo home runs to lead 6-4 into the bottom of the eighth. The Baracos called on Paul Forgeron to pinch hit and he answered with a double to score two to tie the game at 6-6. He was followed by Art Samson who singled to score Forgeron with the winning run. Final score: Louisdale Baracos 7 Petit de Grat Red Caps 6.
Game two was not quite as close with the Baracos scoring five times in the first inning, but in the bottom of the ninth, the Red Caps battled to within two runs, 7-5, and had the bases loaded with two out. The right fielder bounced back to the pitcher – game over, series over.
Once again the table was set – this time for the championship round between Louisdale and River Bourgeois. The River had gone 10-2 on the season while Louisdale was 8-6. Whether this trend would continue into the play-offs was to be determined.
Game one saw strong pitching performances from both teams. The Baracos started Barry Marchand who threw a four-hitter and struck out nine. The River countered with Allan Gibson who gave up eight hits and struck out eight. Gus Boyd and David Digout hit two-run homers for their respective teams. Final score: Louisdale 5 River Bourgeois 2.
Game two, played at the River, was more dramatic with the two teams battling until the bottom of the ninth. The River trailed 3-2 with two men on base; John MacPhee was called on to pinch-hit and he delivered to drive in the tying run. Barry Marchand intentionally walked John Burke to load the bases. A wild pitch ended the game. Final score: River Bourgeois 4 Louisdale 3. Allan Gibson and Leo King combined for the win; allowing only four hits, Barry Marchand was tagged with the loss.
In game three, River Bourgeois led 13-7 going into the ninth inning. With a force play at third, Kenneth Boucher, catcher for the River, grounded to third base, Art Samson, third baseman for the Baracos, stepped on the bag for one, threw to first for two and Allan Gibson, stranded between first and second, was run down for the third out. This strange triple play seemed to spur the team from Louisdale as they stormed back to tie the game, and in the top of the 10th, Gus Boyd, first baseman for Louisdale, stroked a three-run shot to clinch game three. Final score: Louisdale 16 River Bourgeois 13.
But the River was not done yet. Game four proved to be a pitching duel between two of the league’s premier pitchers, Barry Marchand for Louisdale and Leo King for River Bourgeois. Final score: River Bourgeois 3 Louisdale 2. The series was tied at two games each with game five to determine the league championship.
From a pitching duel to a slugfest, game five saw the Baracos pound out 18 hits including five home runs against five River Bourgeois pitchers. The Schooners had 13 hits but Bobby Samson took the win for Louisdale. The game was marred by an incident in which a River Bourgeois player charged an umpire and had to be ejected. Final score: Louisdale 16 River Bourgeois 10.
The Louisdale Baracos had captured their second championship in three years.