Story and Photos by Christian J. Stewart (ISN)
June 4, 2015, Victoria, BC (ISN) – Ethan Skuija pitched a complete game, five-hitter and six different players had RBIs to lead the Victoria Eagles to a 6-2 win over the Victoria Mariners in BC Premier Baseball League (BCPBL) action Thursday night at Royal Athletic Park (RAP) in Victoria.
Victoria Eagles pitcher Ethan Skuija improved to 6-1 on the year with a complete game 6-2 win over the Mariners on Thursday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
The game was part of the opening week activities for the West Coast League Victoria HarbourCats and served as a prelude to the ‘Cats opener against Kelowna on Friday. It was also the second annual match-up at RAP between the two teams in memory of former Victoria Mariner Zach Downey who passed away from cancer last year. Over 500 people attended with the $5 admission and all proceeds being donated for cancer research.
Eagle’s baserunner Tyler Duncan would be tagged out by the Mariners Tyler Schindel on this play at second (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
The Eagles would strike early in this one, scoring a pair in the top of the second off Mariners starter Cole Russell, who would walk a batter, hit another and then watch as his defence committed an error that led to the Eagles first run. After a single by the Eagles’ Mitch Bryan, an RBI groundout from Ben Goertzen scored Tyson Abbott and the Eagles were up 2-0.
Eagles shortstop Kobe Morris looks for the call but would not get it as the Mariners Nick Seginowich would safely steal second on this play (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
They would add two more in the top of the third inning as Tyler Duncan would lead off with a triple to the wall in right-centre and then come in to score on a Tanner Hess single. Hess would then score on a Brendan Turcotte double to make it 4-0.
Eagles baserunner Brendan Turcotte (right) would rush Mariner’s shortstop Jason Willow (left) just enough to cause Willow to throw wide of first, allowing the Eagle’s first run to score on Thursday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Meanwhile Skuija, who had cruised through the first two innings, giving up just a single in each, found his only real trouble in the bottom of the third inning, as Jason Willow would reach on a dropped third strike and then come home on a monster 2-run home run to left by Nick Seginowich, cutting the lead to 4-2.
Brendan Turcotte would scorch a double down the line in the top of the third to score the Eagle’s 4th run of the game (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Skuija would bear down after that, retiring 12 of the 13 batters that he faced over the last four innings, the only glitch being a sixth inning single to the Mariners Brett Irvine.
While it was not needed, the Eagles would add another pair of insurance runs in the top of the seventh. Kieran Waters would reach on a one-out single and then come in to score on a triple by Lenn Nakatsuka. A Kobe Morris single would then plate Nakatsuka to complete the scoring for the game.
The Mariner’s Nick Seginowich (right) greets his teammates after his 2-run home run in the third inning (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Skuija, who improves to 6-1 on the season, allowed just five scattered hits, striking out six and walking none. He improves his ERA to 1.10, good for fourth in the BCPBL. Russell, who allowed three Eagles runs (two earned) in his two innings of work, was tagged with the loss. The Mariners Nick Dawson pitched four plus innings of relief, giving up three runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out two.
Eagles third base coach Anthony Pluta had plenty of different visitors on Thursday as five different Eagles including (L to R) Tyson Abbott, Tyler Duncan, Tanner Hess, Kieran Waters and Lenn Nakatsuka all came around third to score (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Offensively for the Eagles, eight of the nine starting players had hits, with Duncan leading the way with his triple and a double. Six different Eagles had RBIs and five different players crossed the plate, with Hess scoring two of the Eagles six runs.
For the Mariners, the Seginowich home run was the offensive highlight and his second hit of the game. Sam Glowicki, Irvine and Chris Lata had the other Mariner hits.
With the win, the Eagles improve to 18-7 and percentage wise, they sit in third place in the BCPBL, just a half game back of the North Shore Twins, who at 15-3 have played seven fewer games than the Eagles. The Eagles 18 wins are currently tops in the BCPBL. The Mariners fall to an uncharacteristic 5-14 and sit in 10th place in the league.
Both teams now hit the road this weekend, with the Eagles travelling to the Okanagan to take on the 16-8 A’s on both Saturday and Sunday. The Mariners travel to White Rock for a pair with the Tritons on Saturday and then to Coquitlam for a pair with the Reds on Sunday.