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Summer Collegiate

NorthPaws back to .500 after taking two of three from the Bellingham Bells



Photo by: Allen Douglas

KAMLOOPS — The Kamloops NorthPaws are back to .500 after taking two of three from the visiting Bellingham Bells.

Game 1 –

The Kamloops NorthPaws took full advantage of the free pass on Tuesday, en-route to a 3-2 series opening win over the Bellingham Bells.

Kamloops got the offense going early, with third baseman Jaden Bitter lining the first pitch of the 1st inning down the third base line for a double. Two batters later, Matthew Olivares would trade places with Bitter with a double of his own to open the scoring.

Derek Murphy got the start on the bump for Kamloops, working three innings of one-hit ball, allowing 1 run. He was replaced by Joey Rico, who would earn the win in relief thanks to 3 innings of 2 hits and 0 runs. Cade Johnson would pitch two innings to earn a hold, and Lucas Smith shut the door in the ninth to earn the save.

The Bells got their first run in unusual fashion, driving one across in the third inning without the benefit of a base hit. Trent Mallonee would score after reaching first on a dropped third strike, followed by a walk, and a fielder’s choice.

Kamloops would take the lead for good in the sixth when Matt Molina walked a trio of batters allowing two to score courtesy of wild pitch and an RBI groundout from Jacob Schlesselman.

Bellingham would make things interesting by closing to within 1 in the 8th. With runners on first and second and one-out, a ball would eat up Anthony Manuel at first allowing the run to score from second. However Kamloops would escape the inning on the same play after getting the back runner caught in a rundown between home and third. Paws catcher Jerry Nix would run him back to third where a gaff from the Bells allowed Nix to tag out both runners.

Game 2 –

The NorthPaws used a stellar start from a TRU WolfPack pitcher, timely offense from the cleanup spot, and a triple play on defense to win the second game of the series 7-1.

Kolby Luckinchuk got his second start of the season and pitched 6 strong innings giving up 1 earned run on 7 hits as he worked himself out of danger in the 2nd, 4th, and 6th innings.

The Bells would strike first in the contest with Jason Shedlock lining an RBI single bringing home Nate Kirkpatrick in the second.

The Paws would get on the scoreboard in the 3rd, with Jacob Schlesselman getting the party started with a one-out single. That would be followed by singles from Ethan VanDelinder and Jaden Bitter to load the bases. Shortstop Madden Ocko would be plunked to bring in the tying run and then Joey Rico, the winning pitcher from Tuesday, ripped a bases clearing double into right field for 3RBI and a lead the Paws would never give up.

Chaos was the theme of the seventh inning. The Bells would load the bases with nobody out thanks to two walks and a hit batter. That brought Chase Taylor into the ballgame in relief of Joey Stover. Facing Jacob Mejia, Taylor got a shallow fly-out to left, as the ball came home to keep the runner stationed at third, Jorge Olivera was caught between first and second. Olivera would be tagged out between the bases by Manuel who fired home to catch Robbins attempting to score for a triple play. The play was scored F9-2-3-2.

The Paws would add on a trio of insurance runs in the eight to make it 7-1. Casper Rammeloo would record the final three outs and secure a series victory for Kamloops.

Game 3 – 

The Bellingham Bells would finally strike back during the final game of the series, taking the school spirit day game 11-1.

Ryan Beitel was in cruise control on the mound for the Bells, taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning, when Jacob Schlesselman singled to break up the bid for history. Schlesselman was singled home by Nolan Austin for Kamloops’ lone run of the ballgame.

Josh Berenbaum got the start for the ‘Paws and ran into some bad luck giving up 5 runs, only 2 earned through 4.2 innings of work.

Nate Kirkpatrick led the offense for the Bells going 3-5 at the dish, with 4 RBI.

Pitching and defense lead the way for Kamloops

The Kamloops NorthPaws found their fitting in their first cross-border battle of the season against the Bellingham Bells.

Playing a starring role in the series win was newcomer Joey Rico, who earned the win in game 1 before going 2-4 at the dish with 4 RBI in game 2. Rico stepped into the lineup for Kamloops on Tuesday after just arriving to the team.

“I just went out there and tried to do what I normally do, try to command my stuff and just let it work, not try to do too much,” said Rico. “(Being fresh to the team) makes it easier, you’re not so caught up in a gameplan or some idea of what your suppose to do, you just go out there and play. Two-way (player) in college for sure, just trying to do both because i enjoy doing both and want to keep doing it as long as I can. It was pretty awesome to show up for the team and the fans.”

Game two was started by TRU WolfPack product Kobly Luckinchuk who threw six innings, giving up one run.

“I was a lot off-speed, I was spinning the ball really well, come back with a fastball occasionally and it plays a lot better. But just filling up the zone, trusting the team behind you,” said Luckinchuk. “These two teams Victoria and Bellingham are not an easy ride so to come out 500 after playing these two teams, it’s really exciting, we are really happy about it.”

“Coming together quickly (as a team), just real relaxed, chill guys, it has been awesome to be around a good group of young guys,” added Rico.

As the team comes together in the clubhouse, Head Coach Jose Bautista is still working through getting a few more bodies to Kamloops ahead of the first road trip of the season next week to Cowlitz.

“We win the series that is the most important thing to do,” said Bautista. “Couple more players coming in pretty soon. We just started, looking to get more wins and get closer games. I’m pretty happy with what I’m seeing.”

Upcoming Schedule –

Friday, June 7 – Off-day

Saturday, June 8 vs Coquitlam, 6:35 first pitch (non-league)

Sunday, June 9 vs Coquitlam. 2:35 first pitch (non-league)

Monday, June 10 – Off-day

Tuesday, June 11 @ Cowlitz  6:35 first pitch

Wednesday, June 12 @ Cowlitz  6:35 first pitch

Thursday, June 13 @ Cowlitz 6:35 first pitch

For media request:

Jenna Forter
General Manager
Kamloops NorthPaws


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Summer Collegiate

NightOwls Outlast Dudes in Entertaining Game at Serauxmen



NANAIMO — Friday night baseball certainly agrees with the NightOwls faithful, who kept an energy throughout a 4-2 win over the visiting Redmond Dudes at historic Serauxmen Stadium.

Both teams mustered six hits, with third baseman Cowboy Cole Carmichael (ELAC) leading the way for Nanaimo with a 2-4 day, scoring one of the NightOwls runs. Riley Paulino, Ayden Hadley, Deshon Thomas and Tui Ickes, with a double, had the other Nanaimo hits in front of more than 1,800 spectators.

Aidan Boice started for the NightOwls, an opener putting in a scoreless inning. Newcomers Jake Schumacher (Saint Martins) and Moosa Nonomiya (Skagit Valley), the latter striking out three batters, both went two innings, with single inning outings from Tahj Orona, David Stewart, Armaan Drar and Ryan Inouye, who earned the save with a strikeout to end the game.

The game was the first of three in a non-league series at Serauxmen, with the Dudes — great name! — in the Harbour City for games Saturday night (6:35pm) and Sunday afternoon (1pm). Saturday’s big promotion is a chance to win a trip for four to Toronto thanks to YCD Nanaimo International Airport, while Sunday’s matinee game will provide a chance to win a trip to Las Vegas through Nanaimo Mitsubishi.

The NightOwls scored all their runs in the third inning, when Nanaimo mustered four hits and a walk, helped by an error by the Dudes catcher.

The NightOwls next see WCL action when they host the island rival Victoria HarbourCats on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at Serauxmen Stadium, games that are part of the nine games the two teams will face each other this first half of the season. All the game starts are 6:35pm. The HarbourCats currently have a 2-1 edge in the race for the ReMax Generation Alex Burns Real Estate Island Cup.


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Summer Collegiate

Victoria HarbourCats – HarbourCats fall short in battle in Alberta



For immediate release 

EDMONTON, Alta — A couple mistakes at the wrong time, and bats that missed the timely opportunity.

The Victoria HarbourCats (7-6) dropped the first game of a trip to the Alberta capital, falling 3-1 to the host Riverhawks at RE/MAX Field. An early run from Victoria was answered by an Edmonton run in the second inning and then singles from the Riverhawks in the fifth and seventh innings as Edmonton outhit the HarbourCats 9-6.


The HarbourCats struck out a combined 14 times, compared to just six for the Riverhawks, who now sit a game ahead of the third-place HarbourCats at 8-5. The HarbourCats also committed the only two errors in the game.

Elijah Higginbottom, from Tacoma CC, was strong in his starting assignment, going five innings with no walks, two strikeouts and allowing six hits and two runs. Carson Cormier and Ben Hewitt also pitched for Victoria.


Ny’Zaiah Thompson and Cam Schneider were both 2-4, with Schneider driving in Garrett Teunissen in the first inning with a two-out single.


The HarbourCats will get a chance for revenge on Saturday in a 1pm (local time, noon PT) game on Saturday, the game time changed to stay away from the Edmonton Oilers home game against the Florida Panthers, Game Four of the Stanley Cup final.


The HarbourCats are on a six-game road trip that includes a Sunday series-ender in Edmonton, followed by a day off on Monday, then games at Serauxmen Stadium in Nanaimo against the Island rival NightOwls, the fourth, fifth and sixth games in the RE/MAX Generation Alex Burns Real Estate Island Cup — games Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

The Victoria HarbourCats are proud to announce direct links to a DOWNLOADABLE SCHEDULE that will work on your iPhone or tablet, your Google calendar, or your Android device. Click HERE to access the calendars! Contact if you have any problems downloading the calendar to your device.


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Summer Collegiate

NightOwls Edged in Extras in Victoria with 5,000 in Attendance



VICTORIA — An early one-run lead held up — for a long time.

The Nanaimo NightOwls put a bit of a hush on the crowd of 5,044 in attendance at Wilson’s Group Stadium at Royal Athletic Park with a run in the first inning, then nearly hung on for win in a tremendous ballgame played Thursday in Victoria.

The Victoria HarbourCats scraped across runs in the sixth inning and the walkoff in the bottom of the 10th for a 2-1 win over the NightOwls. The game started at 11am for the Mayfair Optometric School Spirit Game and the crowd was loud and hopped up on ice cream and hot dogs.

The HarbourCats (7-5) nearly won it in the bottom of the ninth but had the winning run thrown out at the plate on a great throw by right fielder Mitchell Middlemiss (UBC).

Aiden Russell (San Diego State) was strong in his starting pitching role, going six innings and giving up four hits and one run, that coming in the sixth inning. He struck out eight. Payton Robertson went three scoreless innings, giving up three hits. Venezuelan lefty Richtter Castillo took the loss.

Third baseman Cam Schneider (Fresno State) was 4-5 with the game-winning RBI for Victoria.

The NightOwls (6-6) had eight hits, three of them by third baseman David Draayers (UBC) and two from outfielder Noah Hata (Hawaii Pacific).

The NightOwls now host the Redmond Dudes for evening games on Friday and Saturday, and a 1pm game on Sunday. The Friday game will see skydivers land on the field prior to the game, while Saturday is the now-annual major Blue Jays vacation trip giveaway with YCD Nanaimo Airport. Sunday, a trip to Las Vegas is up for grabs with Nanaimo Mitsubishi.

The next league action for the NightOwls is at home, next week, Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday with the Victoria HarbourCats back in the Harbour City as part of the ReMax Generation Alex Burns Real Estate Island Cup, with nine games between the two teams.


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