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Trail Orioles take two on road vs River Dogs and Mariners

Trail U18 Orioles split weekend matches, return to play June 26 versus Chilliwack Cougars
Trail U18 Orioles slugger Connor Stainer belted a two-run homer to lead the Orioles to a 6-1 win over the VI Mariners on Sunday, June 12 in Kamloops. Photo: Jim Bailey

The Trail U18 Orioles came home with four of eight points after travelling to Kamloops on June 11-12 to face the Kamloops River Dogs and the VI Mariners in BC Minor Baseball College Prep League action.

The Orioles kicked off the weekend on a positive note defeating Kamloops 6-4 Saturday thanks to a great start from Nelson pitcher Levi Konken who threw six and 2/3 innings, giving up five hits in the win.

Owen Dickson earned the save in the seventh and Jake Maniago was 3 for 4 at the plate, while the Orioles Castlegar contingent of Reid Gerrand and Nathan O’Brien had two hits and two RBIs each.

The win against the River Dogs was a bit of payback from the two losses suffered at home on June 4, when Kamloops swept a doubleheader by scores of 13-1 and 2-1 at Butler Park.

The Orioles next played the Vancouver Island Mariners but came up short in a close 5-4 match later that day.

Still, Logan Bradford had a good day on the mound, pitching six innings, and only giving up four hits, while striking out nine.

“We only had two hits but capitalized on four errors and three walks to have the lead 4-3 before a bloop single, error and walk loaded the bases,” said Orioles coach Jim Maniago. “Bradford was called for back-to-back controversial balks to score the tying and winning runs. Was a very frustrating loss.”

The Orioles turned the tables on Day 2, rolling to a 6-1 victory over the Mariners, before capitulating to the River Dogs 5-1.

Jake Maniago pitched a complete game two hitter and struck out nine for the win. Connor Stainer belted a two-run home run to give Trail a 2-0 lead and the Orioles added four more off four errors and four walks.

In the second game against the River Dogs, Owen Dickson got the start and pitched well but had little run support or defence behind him in the 5-1 loss. Three Kamloops pitchers combined for a no-hitter.

“Not a bad weekend on the whole but losing to VI was disappointing,” said Maniago. “Four-game weekends on the road are tough and they are a team we should beat and could’ve put ourselves in a good position to get three wins but just mentally weren’t there and it cost us.”

The Orioles record falls to 14-17 good for seventh place in the tight 11-team division, while Kamloops moves into fifth place with 15 wins and nine losses. Currently just four points separate the Orioles and the third-place Chilliwack Cougars.

Trail has a week off and returns to play on Sunday, June 26 when they host Chilliwack for a doubleheader. The Orioles then play Kelowna COMBA Sun Devils on July 1 for the team’s last doubleheader at home.

“Both are top teams in the league,” said Maniago. “Chilliwack possibly the best. All are important games as everyone is maneuvering for playoff positioning and the standings are tight.”

The games against Chilliwack go at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 26 at Butler Park.

Read: Trail U18 Orioles split with Penticton Tigers

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Jim Bailey

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