A rough weekend on Vancouver Island ground to a halt what had been an impressive run of late for the White Rock Tritons.
Before boarding the ferry for four games in Victoria – two each against the Eagles and Mariners – the South Surrey-based BC Premier Baseball League club had been on quite a roll, winners of five straight games and eight of their last nine.
But the streak didn’t last, as the Tritons lost twice to the Eagles Saturday – by scores of 11-2 and 6-5 – and twice to the Mariners a day later, 1-0 and 7-5.
The losing skid hit the five-game mark Monday evening, after White Rock fell 4-1 to the Abbotsford Cardinals in South Surrey.
In the first game Saturday, the home team pounced on the Tritons early, scoring four runs in the first inning and two in the second to take a commanding lead.
White Rock’s only runs came in the third – John Christiansen singled and later scored on a Liam Rihela base hit – and the sixth, when Aaron Wiegert singled home Dylan Yeager.
The second game was much closer, and needed extra innings to decide.
With the teams tied 5-5 after seven innings, the Eagles scored the winning run in the bottom of the eighth when Alex Hendra-Brown singled and scored two batters later after a White Rock error.
White Rock lead earlier in the game, having gone up 3-0 after the first inning – Yeager and Rihela led the way with doubles – but the Eagles had a big inning later in the game, plating four in the bottom of the third.
Sunday’s first game, against the Mariners, also took extra innings to decide, with the Mariners scoring the game’s only run in the bottom of the 10th.
Tritons’ pitcher Scott Doucet pitched nine innings for the visitors, striking out six.
But if the first game was a pitchers’ duel, the second half of the Sunday doubleheader was anything but, as the two clubs combined for 23 hits in a 7-5 Mariners win.
Yeager led the way with two runs-batted-in in the loss, while Barry Caine and Rihela also knocked in runs for the Tritons.
Before the weekend road trip, the Tritons were in fifth-place in the PBL standings – and firmly entrenched in a playoff spot – but the five-game slide has seen them bumped down into seventh spot, with a 19-19 win-loss record. Eight teams make the playoffs.
Losing streak aside, the team still has an above-average shot at advancing to the post-season; they’re five-and-a-half games up on the ninth-place Whalley Chiefs, with eight games left to play.
White Rock plays the Chiefs Thursday in Whalley.