- BC Games
Royals fall ball wraps terrific season
Parksville’s Quality Foods Royals took to their home field for the final time this year on Saturday, posting a pair of well-earned wins over the Victoria Mariners as part of their farewell to fall ball.
A double header played out under warm, dry conditions featuring a mix of dedicated junior and senior players, the day was pure Canadiana against a backdrop of autumn colours.
“Is this great or what,” longtime Royals’ coach Jim Seredick said through a big smile from the dugout Saturday.
The Royals came from two runs down to win game one 4-3, and hammered out an 8-1 decision in game two, both wins against an M’s team of mostly seniors.
The Royals had 19 players show up to play Saturday, an even split between juniors and seniors, all of whom are aspiring to play for the Royals next year.
The Royals’ players and coaches met for their final practice of the season last Wednesday, and the locals officially closed out the fall ball season in Victoria on Sunday losing 4-0, 10-5.
“We didn’t get the hitting today we had yesterday,” Seredick said after.
Rookie chucker Owen Kelly from Nanaimo pitched four innings of shutout ball throwing a paltry 42 pitches in game one.
“That’s just outstanding.”
The fall ball season started back on Aug. 28.
On Saturday at Inouye-Wallace Field, local chucker Andrew Evernden was solid to pick up the win on the hill in game one.
“It was a great effort out there today, very encouraging,” Seredick said after.
Royals’ homegrown standout senior Justin Dieleman led the offence with four hits and three RBIs, and newcomer Owen Kelly from Nanaimo “was also outstanding today. He started out in centre field and played first base in the second game and played really well, showed a lot of potential. Particularly as a hitter — he’s a very strong left handed batter.”
Colton Tuka “was outstanding,” on the hill in game two for Parksville, giving up one run over four innings.
“He finished on a very high note, he had a 1-2-3 final inning, and he’ll take that and hopefully build on that over the winter mentally, his pitching and Deileman’s hitting, wow, very impressive. It bodes well for next year,” said Seredick.
Practices aside the Royals played 14 games of fall ball. The Royals were in Kamloops the weekend prior for a tournament. The players also underwent more fitness testing on the weekend.
“Without a doubt,” Seredick answered quickly when asked if this year’s installment of fall ball was the best ever. “On paper we had 54 kids registered for fall ball. Granted some of the kids were first year Bantams and are two years away (from playing for the Royals), but it’s very encouraging to see that many kids. We absolutely doubled what we’ve ever had out before (and) we had an outstanding group this year,” he said.
A team effort from the top down, the Royals’ fall ball program is led by the club’s skipper Dave Wallace and dedicated assistants Jim Seredick, Wes Dieleman and Bruce Biro.