Local ball teams win provincial gold
Two local baseball teams took to the road this weekend and brought home provincial gold after some hard-fought final games.
The St. Paul Pee Wee Storm headed to Lacombe to take part in the community tier II provincial tournament from July 20 to 22 and went 2-0 in round robin play, says coach Rick Austin.
The boys played against Lacombe in the semi-finals and beat the team, 13-2. The Hawks then moved on to the finals and beat North East Edmonton by 7-5.
“In the round robin, the boys played really, really good,” says Austin, adding, the team’s pitching was “phenomenal” and the boys’ batting was great. The team was made up mostly of players from St. Paul, along with two boys from Bonnyville and one from Elk Point.
The coach was thankful to the dedicated parents for their help over the weekend and support from the team’s sponsors.
“It was great. As a kid or coach, I’ve never won a provincial title,” says Austin, adding, “the boys played incredible ball.”
The Goodfish Lake/St. Paul mosquitoes headed to Barrhead this past weekend and after a competitive final game against Stettler, the Hawks took home the community tier I provincial championship.
Earlier in July, the team, which was made up of players from Goodfish Lake, St. Paul, Elk Point, Edmonton and High Prairie, made a strong showing during round robin play, winning all six of the team’s games, and outscoring the opposing teams 81-17. This put them into the Tier I category for provincial playdowns held from July 20 to 22.
“It was a good game, it was awesome,” says head coach Rick Rosychuk of the final game against Stettler on July 22. Stettler had also won all six of its round robin games leading into the playdowns.
Although the Hawks were down 3-1 at one point in the final game, the team kept it together and eventually took the game by a score of 5-3 and with it, grabbed the provincial title.
The boys “kept trying and didn’t give up,” says Rosychuk.
The coach says the players from the St. Paul area were the core of the team and played well all weekend.
“They were kind of the steady Eddie of the team,” he says, noting that the players represented their communities well.
“To be the top team in the province is awesome,” says Rosychuk.
Dustin Pankiw from Elk Point played with the Hawks and won the player of the tournament award, “displaying strong ability, sportsmanship and a genuine love of the game,” says the coach.
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