Pitcher Ethan Dean has committed to the Victoria Golden Tide of the Canadian College Baseball Conference. (Michael Briones photo)

Pitcher Ethan Dean has committed to the Victoria Golden Tide of the Canadian College Baseball Conference. (Michael Briones photo)

Parksville Royals second in ‘Best of the West’ baseball tournament

Pitcher Dean commits to Victoria Golden Tide

Parksville Royals made the most of their baseball season despite being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the BC Premier Baseball League being cancelled, the Royals were still able to play a number of exhibition games as well as entered two tournaments.

They finished second at the Zack Downey Memorial in Victoria earlier this month and looked to build on that success at the invitational showcase Best of the West qualifier that featured 19 teams throughout Western Canada. They finished second again, as they fell to the Victoria Mariners 10-8 in the final.

Highlights included leadoff man Breydan Riecker, who had four stolen bases, four runs scored and a .525 on-base percenage. Ryan Deagle was the OBP leader at .555, with a .444 batting average and two doubles. Cody Jackson hit .385 to go with three stolen bases and four RBI.

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In the earlier games, pitcher Seth Gurr recorded impressive stats on the mound. Against the Mid-Island Pirates, Gurr was force from start to finish, striking eight, including two in the bottom of the seventh, scattering five hits while giving up two runs.

Gurr, who joined the Pirates from the Alberta Legion Baseball in Lethbridge, has been a revelation for the Royals this fall, allowing just three earned runs in 23 2/3 innings, posting a 0.90 ERA with 21 strikeouts against two walks.

“Seth’s commitment and conditioning have really helped him show results this fall,” said Royals head coach Frank Kaluzniak. “He’s fearless out there, throws strikes, and keeps our defence in every inning.”

Throughout the tournament, the Royals showed off a balanced offensive attack including stellar base-running that gave their opponents more than they could handle once men were on base.

Meanwhile, pitcher Ethan Dean, a senior at Ballenas Secondary, has committed to the Victoria Golden Tide of the Canadian College Baseball Conference. This season, he has recorded 24 strikeouts, 17 of those swinging, in 21 innings of work for a 2.00 ERA.

“When I saw him throw, I really liked his makeup and competitive nature,” said Curtis Pelletier, head coach for the Golden Tide.

“Ethan has great stuff and is very projectable. I also had some people I trust recommend him.”

The Golden Tide will play their home games at Royal Athletic Park in Victoria. Both head coach Pelletier and pitching coach Ethan Fox are Royals alumni.

— NEWS Staff