BJ Moen (Swift Current, Sask.), shown here at Tournament 12, pitched two scoreless for the Canadian Junior National Team as the high schoolers opened with a 13-3 loss to the Houston Astros instructional league team composed of first and second-year pros. ….

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By Adam Morissette
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The Junior National Team opened the 2014 Fall Instructional League Saturday at ESPN Wide World of Sports at Disney’s Wide World of Sports facing a group of prospects from the Houston Astros organization.

The Astros got to starter Mike Soroka (Calgary, Alta.) early touching the right-hander up for seven earned runs over three innings as they cruised to a 13-3 win.

After scoring a run in the first, the Astros put four across in the second inning and added two more in the third. Soroka gave-up seven hits and a walk, while managing three strikeouts.

Things didn’t go much better for reliever Tyler Whitbred (Camlachie, Ont.), making his JNT debut on the day, as he gave up a run in each of his three innings of work, although only two were earned.

Whitbred allowed three hits and walked two to go along with three strikeouts.

The lone bright spot of the mound came from BJ Moen (Swift Current, Sask.) who worked two scoreless innings issuing only a walk, while striking out two batters.

Moen gave way to RJ Freure (Burlington, Ont.) who surrendered three runs in the ninth.

Defensively, the juniors committed four errors to the Astros’ one.

On offence, the juniors scored a run in the third before adding two more in the ninth. Andrew Yerzy (Toronto, Ont.) scored one of the runs and went 1-for-2 at the plate, while Kobe Hyland (Spruce Grove, Alta.) and JF Garon (Terrebonne, Que.) scored the others.

In addition to Yerzy, Adam Hall (London, Ont.), Tanner Rempel (Abbotsford, BC), Royce Ando (Mississauga, Ont.) and Miles Gordon (Oakville, Ont.) recorded hits.

The juniors left nine runners on base during the game.

UP NEXT: The juniors will play a day/night doubleheader tomorrow, both against college clubs with Lake Sumter Community College visiting ESPN Wide World of Sports for a 10am EDT game, while the evening match-up will see the JNT travel to Deland, Fla. to take-on the Stetson University Hatters at 6:30pm EDT … Matt Ianni (Ottawa, Ont.) will start the morning game and Nicholas Virdo (Brampton, Ont.) will get the start in the evening.