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Saskota senior baseball season set to start May 21

The league boasts 11 teams from throughout southeast Saskatchewan.
The Carlyle Cardinals gather for a group photo after winning the Harbourne Trophy.

SOUTHEAST SASKATCHEWAN - The latest installment of a spring and summer sports tradition in southeast Saskatchewan is about to begin.

The opening pitches for the Saskota Baseball League's 2024 season will be tossed on Tuesday night, with 10 of the league's 11 teams in action.

President Riley Singleton noted the league will have the same 11 teams as last season. The Carlyle Cardinals, who will be seeking their fifth straight league championship, will be in the North Division, along with the Arcola Threshers, Redvers A's, Kenosee Cubs, Kipling Royals and Moosomin Badgers.

The South Division boasts the Estevan Tap House Wolves, the Estevan-based Southeast Diamondbacks, the Oxbow Chiefs, the Carnduff Astros and the Weyburn Sun Devils.

The only change for this year is the Threshers shifting from the South to the North Division, easing their travel schedule. Teams will play a total of 14 games – twice against their division rivals and once versus the squads in the other division, although Singleton noted those in the North Division will have one division foe they will only play once.

Most of the games will be played on Tuesday and Thursday nights. The regular season is slated to end on July 16.

Singleton has noticed a lot of excitement for this season, and he expects there will be a lot of parity once again. The second-ranked Sun Devils and the 11th-place Royals were separated by just four wins last season.

"Carlyle has been strong for a long time, and I've seen a lot of strength out of Estevan," said Singleton. "Weyburn has a lot of young and up-and-coming talent, so it should be a really solid league again this year. Last year was probably the most balanced year we've had overall. It was very equal across the board. A lot of teams had similar win-loss records."

Last year they didn't have many rain-outs or make-up games, and Singleton is hopeful it will be similar this year.

The Saskota's championship showdown, the annual Jack Harbourne Memorial Tournament will happen July 26-28 in Carnduff. The Astros submitted a bid to host the competition for this year, and will have the option of hosting in 2025 as well.

"I think other teams knew Carnduff was very interested in hosting, so no other teams submitted a bid," said Singleton, who predicted the tournament will shift around the league every couple of years.

The championship weekend was held in Estevan in 2022 and 2023. Previously it has been held annually in Kenosee Lake. 

"I think it's good to get the tournament out into other communities. We have lots of great communities, lots of good volunteers and good ball diamonds to play on. So, I think it's great to move it around. Teams can display their communities, and we all get to go spend time in a town we might not spend much time in."