Skip to content

Orillia Royals capture tournament title with home field upset

Orillia squad overcame mediocre 2-2 record to squeak into semis, where they held on to beat Innisfil, before upsetting Burlington in the championship game
orillia wins u18 title at buck pringle 2022
The Orillia Royals won the U18 division title at the Buck Pringle Memorial Tournament in Orillia over the weekend. Front row, from left: Nolan Inglis and James Pritchard. Standing: Gabe Rutherford, Nathan Malloy, Andrew Browne, Mitchell Goldsmith, Jhett Winkel, Whyatt Winkel, Colson Long and Nolan Ness-Thomas. Coaches: Ryan Curtis, Mark Kuntz and Wes Winkel.

The Space Age Insulation U18 Orillia Royals captured the Buck Pringle tournament championship on home soil Sunday.

The Royals had two wins and two losses of Friday and Saturday in the round-robin portion of the tournament which allowed them to just squeak into qualifying for the semi finals as the fourth seed.

The Royals squared off against the top seed, the Innisfil Cardinals, in the semi-final at the Jerry Udell park in Orillia. Both teams battled the cold, wind and rain for a very close hard fought game.

The Royals had a strong first inning and jumped out to a 4-0 lead. The Royals continued to pour on the offence and by the fourth inning had a commanding 9-1 lead.

However, the first-seed Innisfil team battled hard, scoring four runs in the fifth inning, making the game 9-5. The Royals added one run in the sixth to go up 10-5 but again the pesky Cardinals would not go down easy, scoring four more in the bottom of the sixth, making the game a nailbiting 10-9.

The Royals were able to lock down the seventh and final inning to hold on for a 10-9 win.

James Pritchard had a great start pitching for the Royals, holding the Innisfil bats at bay until Nolan Inglis came in and held the fort pitching for the Royals.

Whyatt and Jhett Winkel were the offensive leaders for the Royals, each going 4-for-4 in the back-and-forth contest.

The win qualified the Royals for the finals also as Jerry Udell diamond against the Burlington Bulls.

The Royals were looking to avenge a 15-3 loss suffered to the Bulls earlier in the tournament.

The Royals started the game with Andrew Browne driving in Whyatt Winkel and Nathan Malloy in the first inning, giving the home side a 2-0 lead. The Royals extended the lead to 4-0 in the fourth when Inglis drove home Malloy and Andrew Browne.

In the sixth inning, the Royals blew it wide open when Colson Long, Gabe Rutherford and Jhett Winkel scored, making the game 7-0 for Orillia.

Mitchell Goldsmith pitched six brilliant innings, only giving up one run to the talented Bulls team; he had a terrific command of the strike zone. Nolan Ness-Thomas came in and pitched a terrific seventh inning to pick up the save and lock down the upset win and championship for the home squad.