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BBL: ORIOLES CRUISE TO GAME 3 WIN

The AM Insurance Orioles are one game away from winning the 2014 BBL title after getting a huge win over the Paradise Fitness Jr. Nationals in Sunday night’s BBL action.

By Mike Nauta Jr.

Heading into Sunday night’s Budweiser Baseball League championship game three at the Paeo Stadium in Hagatna, the Paradise Fitness Guam Junior Nationals were hoping to pick up their first win in the best-of-seven series.  However, the only thing standing in their way were the AM Insurance Orioles who were already holding a two game lead.  For the first two innings of the game, things seemed to be working the way the Nats wanted.  

However, as the game progressed the Orioles had other intentions as they manhandled their opponents.  When the final out was recorded it was the O’s who earned the 17-2 victory and pulled within a game of clinching this year’s championship.

After two scoreless innings, the Orioles got things started in their half if the third inning to open up a 5-0 lead.  After a Florencio Binuya base hit, teammate KC Cruz followed with a single of his own to drive in the game’s first run.  Before the Nationals could get out of the inning, the Orioles added four more runs courtesy of RBIs from JR Hattig, Matt Muna, and Michael Dean Aguon.

Orioles Catcher Calvert Alakoa fouls a off a pitch to stay alive in the count. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Orioles Catcher Calvert Alokoa fouls a off a pitch to stay alive in the count. (Photo by Joey Blas)

The early deficit didn’t deter the Junior Nationals as they continued to put forth their best efforts despite playing with no subs on the bench.  In the top of the fourth, the Nationals trimmed their deficit after making it a 5-2 game.  T.J. Leon Guerrero was credited with a two-RBI single.  The bottom of the fourth witnessed the Orioles add three runs to their tally as they upped their lead to 8-2.  Hattig and Aguon drove in one run apiece in the mini surge.

Action in the fifth inning came to a stalemate as neither team managed to produce any runs keeping it a six-run ball game.  However, in the bottom of the sixth, the Orioles added cushion to their already huge lead.  After scoring four more runs, AM Insurance held a commanding 12-2 lead after six complete innings of play.

The Nationals continued their offensive woes as they couldn’t find any answers to put more runs on the board.  For the Orioles, things continued to roll as they had another monster output in the bottom of the eighth inning widening the lead.  After giving up five runs, the Nationals found themselves trailing 17-2 heading into the top of the ninth. Terrific defense by the Orioles retired the Junior Nationals side quickly in the ninth to end the game and give them the victory.

Jr. Nationals Shane Muna attempts to tag out the runner advancing to second base on a throw back from the catcher. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals Shane Muna attempts to tag out the runner advancing to second base on a throw back from the catcher. (Photo by Joey Blas)

The Orioles’ starting pitcher John Pangelinan earned the victory from the mound after pitching a complete game with five strikeouts.  The Junior Nationals’ Kel Francisco was dealt the loss. Offensively, the O’s were led by Hattig and Muna who went a combined 6-for-9 with five RBIs.  Teammate Calvert Alokoa went 2-for-3 with a run scored and an RBI.

With the win, the Orioles go up 3-0 in the series and will look to sweep when they return to the Paseo Stadium for Game 4 on Tuesday night.  Game time is scheduled for 7 pm.

PHOTO GALLERY:

Orioles Pitcher John Pangelinan delivers a pitch against Jr. Nationals Championship Game 3. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Orioles Pitcher John Pangelinan delivers a pitch against Jr. Nationals Championship Game 3. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals Tyler Bautista fights off a pitch to stay alive to extend his at bat. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals Tyler Bautista fights off a pitch to stay alive to extend his at bat. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals Pitcher Polly-Card Luther delivers a pitch against Orioles Championship Game 3. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals Pitcher Polly-Card Luther delivers a pitch against Orioles Championship Game 3. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals First Baseman TJ Leon Guerrero goes up and gets a ball that sails up to get the speedy John Derek out at first. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Jr. Nationals First Baseman TJ Leon Guerrero goes up and gets a ball that sails up to get the speedy John Derek out at first. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Orioles Third Baseman R-Jay Joe makes a nice grab in the hole to throw the runner out at first to end the inning. (Photo by Joey Blas)

Orioles Third Baseman R-Jay Joe makes a nice grab in the hole to throw the runner out at first to end the inning. (Photo by Joey Blas)

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Since forming the GNYFF in 2009, the league has never gone without a season until 2020. The league announced their plans to cancel the 2020 season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

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ALL SPORTING EVENTS HALTED DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS ISSUE

QUICK HITS

RIP: Former Guam football player Phil Mendiola, shown here with son Tano, passed away in Las Vegas due to a heart attack. Mendiola played for numerous Guam teams from youth to varsity. He was 39.
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Morgan McKenna (left with black face mask) poses for a photo with Guam Football Association Technical Director Sang Hoon Kim (seated, with blue face mask) and Guam Football Association Assistant Technical Director Ross Awa (standing) after signing his letter of commitment to play intercollegiate men’s soccer for Muskingum University in Ohio. The Fighting Muskies compete in NCAA Division III’s Ohio Athletic Conference.

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