The Beaverlodge Royals didn't play as well as they would have liked at a tournament in Westlock this past weekend, but the senior men's baseball team had the opportunity to face some high-caliber pitching and get their bats working.
The mixed Dawson Creek-Grande Prairie team traveled to Westlock to take on clubs from Edmonton and the North Central Baseball League, several of which will probably be vying for a provincial title later this summer.
The Royals went 1-1 after opening with an extra-inning 9-8 loss to the Cold Lake Cardinals before shellacking a Wabasca team 9-1.
"From our standpoint, if anything, this weekend allowed us to bond together a little bit better and show that we can play with some of the best teams in that North Central League," explained catcher-coach Andrew Nash.
"On a positive note, the batting went well and the calibre of pitching that we faced was pretty good. We hit quite well and executed."
But the Royals opened with an inconsistent performance against the Cardinals. The Royals made several errors something they have not done very often during play in the Wheatbelt Baseball League although they managed to come back and tie the game in the seventh to force the extra innings. However the Cardinals scored in the ninth for the win.
"We probably should have won the game, but had a couple of errors here and there. We were fortunate to come back in the seventh inning to tie it up and force the extra innings."
That loss moved the Royals into a game Saturday opposite Wabasca that had lost to an Edmonton club Friday.
"We had a good game, but it was a game too late."
The tourney was an eight-team affair, but teams had to win their first game to advance deeper into the tournament. The second game was a money-game and once it was over the two teams left the tournament.
Royals Jory Lutzmann, Scott Gill and Devon Letourneau split the pitching duties in the first game. Brett Mite tossed the complete game against Wabasca and picked up the win.
This weekend the Royals return to Wheatbelt Baseball League action when they travel to Fort St. John to take on the Paladin Black Sox in a doubleheader Sunday.