West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles battle Newport for first place

West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles battle Newport for first place

West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles fall in semifinal at Couer d’Alene tournament

The West Kootenay Trail ‘A’ Orioles came within a game of making it to the final at the Coeur d’Alene Invitational Baseball Tournament in Idaho on the weekend.

The ‘A’ Orioles cruised through the round robin with an 11-0 win over the CDA Blacksocks, a 7-0 shut out of Whitman County, and an 11-8 win over the Spokane Crew. However, the Crew came back to defeat the Orioles 8-6 in the semifinal to end the Orioles run.

Spokane scored two runs in the third inning to break a 2-2 tie, then added another three in the fourth to take a 7-2 lead. The Orioles rallied in the fifth scoring two runs and again in the bottom of seventh to cut the lead to 8-6, but that is as close as they came.

Jesco Knelson went 2-for-3 and Kelton Forte was 2-for-4 in the match.

West Kootenay heads into a critical penultimate weekend of play in the Spokane American Legion Baseball League.

The ‘A’ Orioles take on Newport High School in a doubleheader on Friday. The crucial games will likely determine first place in the American Division.

West Kootenay currently leads the division with a 9-1 record, however, Newport is at 11-2, and trails the O’s by just half a game.

On Saturday, the Orioles play the Prairie Cardinals in a two game tilt at Post Fall High School. The Cardinals are also in the thick of a playoff hunt with a 7-2 record, good for third place and 1.5 games behind West Kootenay.

Spokane American Legion wraps up play July 13. The ‘A’ Orioles will play its final two regular season games at home at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. at Bulter Park against the Spokane Indians ‘A’.