The West Kootenay Orioles won their semifinal match against the Olympic Crosscutters, 7-6, Tuesday night, and play in the final of the Washington American Legion State championship against Hanover Wednesday at 4 p.m. Keith DeWitt photo.

West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles in prime position for Washington State final

The West Kootenay Orioles defeated Olympic in the semifinal on Tuesday, play Hanover in State final

The West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles played for the Washington American Legion ‘A’ State championship on Wednesday after defeating the Olympic Crosscutters in the semifinal on Tuesday in Richland, Wash.

The undefeated Orioles were in a prime position to capture its first American Legion State title after beating Olympic 6-1, unfortunately, the result of the evening finale was unavailable at press time.

“We’re pretty comfortable with where we sit,” said Orioles coach Jim Maniago. “We’ll do our usual routine and try to keep it light, but I’m sure the boys will be a little nervous and excited.”

West Kootenay faced host Hanford Flames, after the Flames torched the West Valley Bees 13-7 in the other semifinal.

“They (the Orioles) are confident but know Hanford is a good team and it’s always scary to play the host team.”

West Kootenay’s wins have been driven by key hits and big innings, and the win over Olympic was no exception as the Os jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first frame.

“We were a little lucky last night (Tuesday),” said Maniago. “They gave us some runs with errors in the first inning and it was the difference.”

The Crosscutters actually out-hit the Orioles, banging out nine hits to the O’s eight, however, four Olympic errors were costly, as West Kootenay played perfect defensively.

“Our bats have given us comfortable leads, but our pitching and defence has been outstanding. When we make an error, it seems like the next play someone makes a great play to make up for it.”

The 4-0 Orioles have actually improved defensively as the series wears on, making just four errors in four games, compared to 14 committed by their opposition.

Their pitching has also been nothing short of spectacular allowing just six runs over the four matches. Jake Maniago went five and 2/3 innings on Tuesday, giving up just one run while striking out eight batters.

The Crosscutters scored in the top of the fifth to make it 5-1, but the Orioles restored the five run lead, plating a run in the bottom half of the inning. Closer Connor Stainer came in and struck out four batters to end the match and send the Orioles to the final.

“Jake did what Brayden (DeWitt) did the night before, bent but didn’t break,” said Maniago. “They had some runners on a few times, but then he came back and struck a few guys out and they didn’t get anything.

“That’s what wins you championships.”

After an American Division title, and an undefeated run through the Districts and State championship, Maniago and the team were confident going in to Wednesday’s final.

In addition, according to the double-knockout format, Hanover, at 3-1, had to beat West Kootenay twice to win the championship.

“It’s been a great year regardless but you might only get one chance at something like this,” added Maniago. “We want to finish it off.”

The State championship final goes at 4 p.m. today, with the second game, if necessary, slated for 7 p.m.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kootenay doctor among 82 physicians, dentists calling on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Looking at ICBC crashes report for Trail

Last week the B.C. insurer released collision details from municipalities across the province

Structures not threatened by wildfires burning in the Arrow and Kootenay Lakes region

Official says more lightning-caused fires could occur in region over next 36 hours

West Kootenay region experiences drier-than-normal July: Report

The region only received around 57% of its normal precipitation during the month

Rossland Heritage Commission looks for new members

You have until Sept. 4 to apply to become a member

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

Abbotsford mom worried about her two kids in Beirut following explosion

Shelley Beyak’s children were abducted by their dad in 2018

Young Canadians, hospitality workers bear the brunt of mental strain in 2020: report

A study by Morneau Shepell points to economic uncertainty in the pandemic as the cause for angst

Health Canada recalling more than 50 hand sanitizers in evolving list

Organization says to stop using products listed, and to consult a health-care professional

Airborne hot dog strikes Greater Victoria pedestrian

Police called to 4200-block of Quadra Street for hot dog incident

Most Read