Closson club wins debut skins tourney

A first attempt at running a skins tournament worked out just fine for the Gord Closson Forest Products Fastball Club earlier this month.

The Duncan team hosted three other squads for the tournament at Glenora, with plenty of cash on the line. The first six games were worth $70 apiece or $10 an inning. That went up to $140 per game in the semifinals and $210 in the finals.

"It was a different format altogether," manager Joe DiLalla said. "I think we’ll do the same thing next year."

The host team cleaned up with $530, more than double the total of the second-place Sooke Smoke, who collected $240. Nanaimo’s Palladian claimed $100, while the Nanaimo midgets earned $30. Closson won the final game by a single run, beating Sooke in the eighth inning.

"We had a good weekend," DiLalla acknowledged. "We did most of the damage. We’re fortunate that we’ve got a couple of good chuckers."

Resuming the regular season, the Duncan team managed a 4-0 road victory over Palladian on June 12.

They got on the board in the third inning when Shane McLaughlin walked, then got to third on a double by Alan Ross, and scored as Trevor Gicas was tagged out at first. McLaughlin blasted a solo home run in the fifth inning. Joey Massingham then singled and Gicas doubled before Brad Robinson sent them both home on a single.

Korrey Gareau pitched the first four innings, giving up just two hits while striking out 11. Craig Snyder pitched the next three and surrendered one hit while striking out three.

At home on June 17, Duncan beat Baker Supply 8-0 on Tuesday, mercying the Nanaimo team in six innings.

"We didn’t have a huge inning, but it added up to eight, and we’ll take the win," DiLalla said.

Rick Smith pitched a completegame shutout with 14 strikeouts and helped his cause by going 2-for-4 with three runs batted in, including a walk-off two-run homer. Marty Steen also starred, going 3-for-4 with two runs and three RBIs, with a two-run homer in the fourth. Massingham, Bob Court, Dom Mansueti and Dave Devana each had two hits.

The team is at home to Palladian on June 24 at 7 p.m.