Last Updated: August 16, 2016
WCBA Ontario Summer Games
The Western Counties Baseball Association recently sent a team of Bantam aged (14 – 15 year olds) to the Ontario Summer Games in Mississauga.
“The Ontario Games Program started in 1970 in Etobicoke as a showcase for amateur sport. They have now become Ontario’s largest multi-sport event, including both team and individual sports.
Provincial level athletes from ages 12 to 18 qualify through a regional selection process conducted by the Provincial Sport Organizations (PSOs). The Games take place every two years and are awarded through a bidding process. They are supported by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport in collaboration with host communities.
For many young athletes, the Ontario Summer Games is the highpoint of their sporting career, while for others the Games are a stepping stone for the Pan Am Games or even the Olympics”
Tryouts were held in Port Lambton in May and 16 players from Sarnia, Chatham, Wyoming and Corunna were selected to represent Western Counties.
Baseball Ontario had 14 teams apply for the 12 team tournament and Sarnia was selected along with London to playoff for the chance to compete in the Summer Games. WCBA split a double header in Sarnia and won the deciding game against the London Badgers in London to earn the right to participate in the games.
The team adopted the previous Western Counties Bantam affiliate team logo of the Wolverines and headed to the Sumer Games on August 11.
The Summer Games started with the opening ceremonies at the Hersey Centre on Thursday evening. Over 3000 athletes and coaches filled the arena along with family members, performers and politicians.
The Wolverines played three games on Friday, spending 14 hours at the Ninth Line diamond in sweltering heat and rain delays winning two of the three games.
The Wolverines defeated the Toronto Baseball Association in the 10:00 game by a score of 3 to 2. The 3:00 game saw the WCBA team defeat the Southern Counties team by a score of 13 to 8. In the evening game the boys lost to a strong Northern Counties Baseball Association (Ottawa) team by a score of 11-1.
Saturday brought severe weather to the Ninth Line park and after two rain delays the game against the Western Ontario team was stopped early in the third inning. Both games this day were cancelled and were unable to be rescheduled.
Baseball Ontario, as the Provincial Sport Organization, changed the format of the tournament for Sunday to include a quarter final game. This put the WCBA Wolverines up against the Central Ontario Baseball Association. The final score was 12-2 for the COBA team, who were the eventual Gold medal winners of the Ontario Summer Games. Silver went to the Sun Parlour team and Bronze was awarded to the Hamilton District.
The Western Counties players should be very proud of themselves as they performed very well against some of the best ball players in Ontario.