The 100 Mile Men’s Fastball League season ended on July 6 with a 4-0 upset victory by Sanders Redi Mix over Jake’s Pub Buds.
Sanders’ Reg Hooper chucked the shutout at Lumberman’s Park, leading his team to a victory that nobody had expected.
Prior to the race for the final, Sanders had been sitting in fourth place in the league, and according to league president and team spokesperson Rob Sanford, the season had been a challenge because the team has struggled all year.
“We have three young guys who we picked up at the start of the season, including one 14- and one 15-year-old. We’re looking to the future in doing that and they’re all happy to be playing some serious ball.”
He says their biggest advantage was having Hooper on the mound.
“He’s the best pitcher in town, but the win was really a team effort. Everyone on the team got to play and get up to bat.
“We were all just happy to make it to the final. That was good enough.”
Sanders’ rise to the top came with an earlier 3-1 semifinal win over Shuswap Nation. Sitting at a 1-1 tie late in the game, players went into extra innings and Sanders was able to pick up on a pitch by Shuswap’s Mark Boyce for an uncontested double.
In the final, Jake’s team, with veteran pitcher Greg Parent also carried a couple of bantam age players.
Jake’s spokesperson Karum Parsad says everyone felt all along that their chances of making it to the top were good.
“We had been in third place but have a fairly good team and had done well during the season. Of course, I was disappointed about the final result, but it was a good game. One inning was the difference in the game.”
The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth inning when Sanders got what would be the only runs of the game.
“Reg was the difference in the playoffs and did us in. He’s very good and we just didn’t get timely hits.”
Hooper had not pitched much during the regular season and only played regularly during the playoffs.
“When you’re not used to seeing him regularly, it’s hard,” says Parsad.
As to the future of men’s fastball in 100 Mile House, Sanford says he can only see it as getting better and better.
“We have five competitive teams that could all win on any night. We’re all equal and that makes for very competitive ball, but we’re always looking for more players.”
On the night of the final, the league presented longtime scorekeeper Millie Halcro with a bouquet of flowers for her dedication to the organization.
“Millie’s there all the time for us,” says Parsad. “She’s unbelievable, no matter if there’s rain or snow, she’s there. It wouldn’t seem right if we were playing without her.”
Anyone who is interested in playing next season can contact Sanford at 250-395-6152.