Sports

Royal double headers

The Parksville Royals will be looking to add to the win column in Abbotsford against the Cardinals on Saturday and the Langley Blaze on Sunday, both double headers.

The Royals were at home to take on the Nanaimo Pirates on Wednesday night (score not available at press time) after winning two games and losing two games last weekend at home. They will look to surpass and improve upon their six games they won last season and hope to capitalize on their good play early on.

“We’ve been playing some real good baseball early on here. It started out for us at the Best in the West tournament and has continued on,” assistant coach Bruce Biro said. “We’ve really been solid on defense and our pitching has been steady. Offensively, we’ve been hitting the ball but we could definitely be in a better position across the board with everyone contributing at the plate.”

The Royals currently sit with a record of 2–4 and handed the North Shore Twins their first loss of the season on Saturday with a 2–1 victory. They will have a tough test this weekend on the road against the 5-5 Abbotsford Cardinals and the 12–1 Langley Blaze, who sit in first place in the B.C. Premier Baseball League.

“Langley has been one of those teams that’s always at the top of the standings, so it’s going to be a tough test for sure,” Biro said. “We know what we’re up against with them and it’s a matter of staying mentally focused and keeping an even keel on the highs and lows.”

The Royals held a practice ahead of their Wednesday night tilt against the Nanaimo Pirates and all signs pointed to good things. There were lots of smiles and positive signs shown by the players after picking up the split last weekend, something that can go a long way for the team if they can keep it up.

“Practice was great this week. The boys were upbeat and had good energy and focus,” Biro said. “We’re going to need to stay sharp and maintain that energy and focus over the weekend, especially heading towards that fourth game of the weekend on Sunday. If we can keep the energy and focus, we’ll be right in the thick of things.”

Ethan Fox, a 17-year–old from Campbell River, leads the Royals in batting average with a clip of .471. Andrew Evernden, 18 from Parksville, and Justin Dielman, 19 from Nanoose Bay, are both batting .364. Evernden has one win and one loss coming on the mound so far this season to go along with nine strikeouts in 10 innings. Erringtons Liam Ballance, 17 years old, has two RBI’s on the season so far while Josh Anderson, 17 from Nanoose Bay, has one.

The Parksville Royals’ next home series comes Sunday, May 11 when they host the Vancouver Cannons at Inouye-Wallace Field at Springwood Park.

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