For the first time in recent history, Williams Lake will have a minor fastball team competing at a provincial championship.
This week, from July 12-15, a group of U14 boys will travel to Clearwater to compete at the BC Minor Fastball Championships.
The players — Cole Broen, Chris Fontaine, David Matheson, Tyler Tenning, Brandon Moore, Ben Stafford, Devon Hill, Wyatt Buller, Hayden Lyons, Keegan Morey and Trevor Moore — were selected from a group of Williams Lake Minor Fastball Association players to attend the tournament.
Michelle Tenning, president of the league, said she can’t remember the last time Williams Lake had enough players, and enough interest in the sport, to send a team to the tournament.
“We haven’t sent a team to provincials in a really long time,” Michelle said, and noted the tournament will be a good test for the players, who are used to playing on mixed boys and girls teams.
“We have a few new players, but most of these kids have been playing for quite a while.
“We probably have about four newcomers on the team, but the biggest thing is these kids have never played ball competitively, so this will be their first competitive tournament.”
Michelle hopes the players and the league will continue to develop and produce more competitive teams and players.
“We’d like to build on this and build it up more next year,” she said.
“We had so many new players this year, so we hope to keep growing it.
“Hopefully this will be the start. And then we can try to get the younger teams back interested in more competitive ball.”
Williams Lake will join teams from Clearwater, Richmond, Sooke, Merritt, North Surrey, Cloverdale, Prince George and Fleetwood at the tournament.
The tournament also features both an opening and closing ceremony, MVP awards, and a skills competition.
The WLMFA houses teams from T-ball all the way to peewee (U14) currently, and plays weekly at the Esler Sports Complex’s Dave Means Ball Park.