Orioles come up empty in Kelowna, set sights on GFI this week

The AM Ford Orioles withstood the heat but not the competition at the 12th annual Kelowna Jays Blast baseball tournament on the weekend.

The Trail AM Ford Orioles withstood the heat but not the competition at the 12th annual Kelowna Jays Blast baseball tournament in Kelowna on the weekend.

With temperatures hovering around 40 C, the Orioles finished with a 1-3 record and fell short of the money round.

The Orioles opened the tournament on Friday with a 5-3 win over the Prince George Grays. However, the host Jays handed Trail its first loss later on Friday by a 9-2 count.

Saturday, Trail needed a pair of wins to advance to the next round but their fate was sealed in their first game of the day.

Although Trail held a 4-0 lead after six innings, the Coquitlam Angels rallied for a 6-5 win. Trail had its chance with the bases loaded in the seventh but couldn’t push across the winning run.

With the Orioles’ hopes to advance dashed, manager Jim Maniago shuffled his lineup in order to preserve some players for this week’s Grand Forks International tournament.

Nevertheless, the team put together a strong outing against the Burnaby Collegiate Bulldogs before falling 11-10 in extra innings.

The Highline Bears out of Seattle took home the championship by defeating the Kelowna Jays 6-1 in the final game.

Coquitlam and Calgary finished third and fourth respectively.

The Orioles turn their focus to the GFI, which kicked off Tuesday. Trail was scheduled to face the West Coast Guns Tuesday and the Everett Merchants on Wednesday.

The Orioles last round robin game was today against the North Sound Emeralds. Results were unavailable at press time.

The GFI Money Round begins Saturday with the championship game slated for 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.