Orioles fly home early from Grand Forks International

Despite a good start, the Trail AM Ford Orioles missed out on the money this year at the GFI

Despite a good start, the Trail AM Ford Orioles missed out on the money this year at the Grand Forks International Baseball Tournament.

The Orioles opened the tournament with a decisive 17-6 victory over the West Coast Guns out of Stockton, Calif. on Wednesday at James Donaldson Park in Grand Forks, however, a pair of losses to Pacific International League’s Everett Merchants and 2010 GFI champion Seattle Studs would send the Trail team packing.

The Orioles were playing in arguably one of the toughest pools having to face the PIL-leading Everett Merchants and perennial favourite Seattle Studs.

On Friday The Orioles hung in with the Studs who were up just 9-6 after four innings, but a three-run fifth broke it open as Seattle would go onto a 14-9 victory.

Chris Florko hit two doubles and went 4-for-5 at the plate for the O’s, while Joey Underwood was 4-for-6 and Kyle Mace and Josh Lowden went 3-for-5 including back-to-back doubles in the ninth. Scott Davidson took the loss on the mound for the O’s.

It was a must-win match for Trail when they played the Merchants Saturday morning, but the Merchants Jason Lotzer kept the Oriole hitters off-balance all night throwing a two-hitter over seven-and-two-thirds innings for a 10-2 Everett win.

The Merchants led just 3-1 going into the seventh but a four-run outburst would ice it for the Washington State crew. Darrin Kissock suffered the loss.

In the playoff round Sunday the Thurston County Senators got by the Parkland White Sox 3-1, while the Seattle Studs shut out the North West Honkers 2-0.

The Lacey Saints fell to the Burnaby Bulldogs 13-1, and Everett surprised the undefeated Langley Sr. Blaze 6-3.

In Monday’s semifinal the Bulldogs scored two runs in the top of the ninth to break a 1-1 tie and down the Senators 3-1, while the Merchants broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the sixth to beat the Studs 4-2.

The result of Monday’s final match between the Burnaby Bulldogs and Everett Merchants was unavailable at press time.