Close calls, but Mariners beaten

VIBI Mariners pitcher Connor Russell fields a grounder himself and throws to first base for an out during Sunday
VIBI Mariners pitcher Connor Russell fields a grounder himself and throws to first base for an out during Sunday's Canadian College Baseball Conference game at Serauxmen Stadium.
— image credit: GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin

The VIBI Mariners scratched and clawed and might have hoped for better at the ballpark.

Nanaimo’s Vancouver Island Baseball Institute won one of four games against the Okanagan Coyotes this past weekend at Serauxmen Stadium. The M’s lost 5-3 then won 6-0 on Saturday; the next day they lost 1-0 and 9-5.

Sunday’s losses were especially close, as the Mariners had their chances in the early game and also in the barnburner game, which needed 11 innings to be settled.

In the first game the M’s allowed only five hits but made four errors. Steve McKinnon took the loss, allowing one earned run over six innings. Greg Brady had two hits and Tyson Dyck had two runs batted in.

Jorhn Kaluzniak was the winning pitcher in that day’s rematch, allowing just one hit over six innings while striking out 10. Chad Schultz was 3-for-3 at the plate, Mitch Hawkins was 2-for-4, Cody Pendergast hit a triple and drove in two runs and Ty Armstrong also had two RBIs.

Sunday’s early game saw VIBI’s Connor Russell thow a complete nine-inning game, allowing three hits, no earned runs and striking out 13 batters. Brady had two hits in that contest.

The series finale was a crazy game, with the teams combining for 31 hits. McKinnon was 3-for-4 with two RBIs, Connor Merilees hit two doubles and Pendergast, Brady, Dyck and Schultz had two hits apiece. Austin Penner was tagged with the loss.

GAME ON … VIBI travels to Kelowna to play Okanagan and the Calgary Dinos on Saturday (April 19) and Sunday.

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