MANOR - Alana Wilson is this year’s umpire-in-chief of Carlyle Minor Ball.
She is solely responsible for the mentoring of young local umpires and assigns all girls’ fast pitch and boys’ baseball games.
Born and raised in Carlyle, Wilson is married to Mike and now lives in Manor. Kruz is their son and she fondly remembers how she got started.
“Several years ago, Bill Wyatt invited my son to a one-day umpires’ clinic. Kruz wanted me to tag along and so I did. When we got there, Bill looked at me and said with a straight face, ‘You can’t sit here all day long doing nothing. You might as well take the course as well’. And so, I did.”
Wilson loves the game of baseball and absolutely loves umpiring. But she really loves mentoring the local kids.
“For many years, Bill Wyatt set the standard and I am proud to be following in his footsteps. For 2022, we have 11 boys from 13-17 years of age. They are great kids and are such a pleasure to work with.”
In southeast Saskatchewan, Carlyle is known as a mecca for the recruiting and training of young umpires. All officials are dressed impeccably, complete with top shirts, hats and dress pants. Courtesy, determination and decisive decision making are necessary traits.
Often, surrounding towns phone and book Carlyle umpires for their own home games and tournaments.
Bill Wyatt was involved in umpiring for over 20 years and retired in 2020 when the pandemic began.
“I was originally mentored by Kevin Culy out of Estevan many years ago. I in turn was able to teach many local umpires including Shelby McNair, Kruz Wilson, and of course his mother Alana. She is a fine person and has developed into an excellent mentor herself. Carlyle Minor Ball is in fine hands with Alana in charge. She is great for the job.”
Mentoring is a full-time commitment and when Alana isn’t umpiring herself, she is there to coach and teach nearly every single day. She often provides ball diamond advice between innings. The younger umpires are promoted as Wilson sees fit and she takes immense pride in talking about her select group of young officials.
“We are a big happy family, and I am the working mom to all of them. My personal goal is to recruit four new umpires every year. And, by the way, girls are more than welcome.”
Wilson also wanted to mention that while cases of umpire abuse are rare, there are isolated instances. “Like any sport, officials are there to do the best of their ability. Abuse of a young official is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. All of us have each other’s back, always.”
Wilson herself also umpires the older age groups and ladies’ fastball. She was honoured to have umpired at Westerns in Edmonton back in 2019. In addition to loving baseball, she also enjoys the game of golf and is a member of the Carlyle Golf Club.