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Let’s play ball; community minor ball programs begin season.

The communities of Kerrobert, Luseland, Macklin, Unity and Wilkie will all be hosting a Minor Ball Day activity as part of their season's activities.

Kerrobert and Luseland minor ball programs see strong registration numbers.

With 85 kids registered for Kerrobert Minor Ball, everyone is excited about the season. Five softball teams from Learn-to-Play and U7 to U13 will play as well as three baseball teams in 11U, 13U and 15U divisions.

KMB will host Minor Ball Day May 27 creating an event with added attractions that include a food truck, bouncy castle, beer gardens and live entertainment in the evening. Minor ball games start at 1 p.m. and play through the afternoon with the day finishing up with a senior slo-pitch game.

A Kerrobert Minor Ball spokesperson says thanks to fundraising efforts and support from KMB fees, there is a new pitching mound, catching gear, umpire equipment, balls, pitching plates and updated landscaping equipment. The organization also purchased new jerseys. The target of this year’s 50/50 proceeds is new jerseys for the remainder of the minor ball participants.

Luseland Dust Devils spokesperson, Bob Prieston says they have 93 kids registered for the program this season.

“The Dust Devils’ name dates back historically to baseball teams based out of Saskatchewan quite a number of years ago. We’ve resurrected the name this year for all of our ball teams, with some new logos as well that you can see on our new Facebook page.”

Luseland Dust Devils will include nine teams altogether with U9 and U11 girls’ softball and 11U and 13U boys’ baseball. Additionally, there will be mixed rally cap teams by birth years of 2015 to 2019.

Executive serving the community’s youth sports organization include Bob Prieston, Lynn Cairns, Kelsy Thompson, Ryan Faubert and Kierra Gottfried.

Prieston said they will hold a minor ball week with all teams playing home games over four days from May 29 to June 1. The organization also has some special plans lined up for that week, with plans still being finalized.

Ball fans in Macklin and Wilkie excited for season

In Macklin, 154 kids are registered to play ball. The Macklin Minor Ball organization said there were insufficient numbers for the U19 softball division and 13U baseball division, so they made the decision to release those players enabling them to play in other communities if they chose. This means their final registration numbers are 138.

MMB will have teams in U7 to U17 in softball divisions as well as T-ball. The baseball division will include teams in 11U to 18U along with Rally Cap and T-ball teams.

Macklin will host sports days June 9-11. Additionally, all teams except 15U boys will be hosting a tournament or games in their seasons.

MMB is erecting two new scoreboards this season, meaning all four of the main ball diamonds will now include this feature.

The community’s youth sports organization benefits by the volunteer commitment of the MMB executive made up of president Sheldon Reschny, vice-president Robert Johnson, secretary Lindsay Stang, treasurer Mel Cowie, Jason Russell, Craig Folks, Wade Dean, Denise Krieger, Kalyce Kohlman, Chris Scherger, Kelly Getter, Chantelle Gette, Wade Stang, Bob Baier, Mike Volk, Colin Fleck, Justin Reschny and Tara Schachtel.

Macklin has bid to host provincial events but has not yet heard back if their bids were successful. In 2022, Macklin Minor Ball won provincial medals and hosted provincial events in minor and senior divisions.

As previously announced, the Macklin U18 baseball team will join the senior men’s Lakers playing in the Battle River Baseball League.

Wilkie Minor Ball reports they have 71 players registered for their season, which is an increase from 2022.

Three teams registered through Softball Sask. include U4, U5 and U7. Three teams are registered through Baseball Sask., and they include teams in Rally Cap, 11U and 13U.

Minor Ball Day is being held June 17 in Wilkie and the youth sports organization is hoping for fans to support teams playing that day. The date was chosen to complement other activities taking place in the community that day as part of pool fundraising efforts.

WMB says they are in need of new shale for three of their diamonds. Sponsorship letters were sent out and the organization was overwhelmed by the generosity of local businesses, family, and friends as well as town citizens. This enabled the youth sports group to purchase the product that was needed to keep the diamonds safe and looking great.

The community organization benefits from the volunteer efforts of those who sit on the WMB executive including president Dani Cey, vice-president Teagan Goodchild, treasurer Charlie Sittler, secretary Andrea Kotzer, fundraising Jamie Volk and Jill Thomson along with parent members Marcia Peel, Brandyn Suchan and Megan Davey.

The coaches for the 2023 season include: U4 - Brandon Kotzer, U5 - Loni Sittler; U7 - Jill Sittler, Rally Cap - Rick Cey, 11U - Mike Sittler, 13U - Kim Claffey.

Unity Minor Ball kicked off season with diamond cleanup

Players, coaches, and parents take pride in their community’s ball diamond venue in Unity. An annual clean-up day was held May 6 to prepare the diamonds for the upcoming season.

“Best turnout we have had in a very long time, lots and lots of players and parents and coaches out making it go so quickly,” reports the Unity Minor Ball executive.

“Huge Shout out to JDS/Wildeman Sports for the use of the man lift and TransGas for the use of the skid steer, which helped make the day go smoothly.”

A representative for Unity Minor Ball says, “Registration is completed, and we have a team in every minor category. There are 113 kids in the softball division and 107 in baseball division, making for 130 taking part in this youth sports organization.”

There will be a number of games and events at the diamonds throughout the season including playing host to the multi-team Girls’ Prairie League Softball June 23-25. As well, the 15U boys’ baseball team is hosting provincials July 14-16.

While not under the Unity Minor Ball banner, Unity ball diamonds will also see several Unity players on the newly formed team, 18UAAA Sun Devils, playing with the Sask. Prairie Baseball League. The team will host several games in Unity, starting with a doubleheader May 13.

The Elks diamond, which underwent an overhaul last year, looks great and UMB is looking to redo the Lions diamond this fall.

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