GRAND FALLS-WINDSOR, N.L. – There’s a new team in town.
Actually, it’s a team made up of players from more than one town who have come together to compete against other teams from Atlantic Canada.
Six of the players on the Central West Ravens female baseball team are products of the Grand Falls-Windsor Minor Baseball Association.
Coach Jason Mosher of Corner Brook said the team is newly formed, and is a brainchild of himself and Grand Falls-Windsor’s Heather Russell and Dale Green after both Corner Brook and Grand Falls-Windsor teams travelled to the Atlantic Championships last year.
While there, Holly LaPierre of Hammonds Plains Minor Baseball mentioned it would be nice for Corner Brook or Grand Falls-Windsor to send a team over for the Bedford Days tournament this year.
With that kind of commitment, the teams wouldn’t have a chance to fundraise, he said, because you don’t normally choose teams until the second week of June.
“So Heather and myself and Dale Green talked about it and we decided it would be a great idea to offer a travel team to these girls so some of the elite ball players in the area would have a chance to travel to an elite tournament,” Mosher said.
Anybody from Grand Falls-Windsor west was able to play on this team. After two tryouts – one in Corner Brook and one in Grand Falls-Windsor – in which 38 players attended, the 13-player 14U team was selected.
The roster holds one player from Cow Head, one from Pasadena, six from Grand Falls-Windsor and five from Corner Brook.
They planned practices at the Civic Centre Annex in Corner Brook until the snow cleared, and then planned practices around tournaments to try to keep the cost of travel down as much as possible.
All this in preparation for the Bedford Days Invitational the end of this month.
“It’s a tournament that’s been going on for about 15 years now, however, this is the first year that they are offering a 14-and-under female division,” Mosher said, adding they will be playing against high-calibre teams from New Brunswick, two from Nova Scotia, and potentially Prince Edward Island.
“We have an extremely strong team. I’ve coached a lot of good teams over my years but this is the deepest, strongest team that I’ve coached in a division.”
He continued, “Everybody on the team can hit. They play great defence and we have a lot of strong pitching. We will be a force in the tournament for sure.”
The tournament begins June 29, and the coaching staff booked the trip so the girls could experience Canada Day in Halifax afterwards.
“I plan for the girls to spend Canada Day on the waterfront that evening, take in the fireworks and the celebrations in downtown Halifax,” Mosher said. “It’s the first time for a lot of them seeing Canada Day in a big city. It’s not all about the baseball. It’s about these girls getting experience as well.”