The Sylvan Lake Lightning baseball team may not be provincial champions, but its players have every reason to be pleased with their performance over the weekend.
The Lightning hosted Bantam AA Provincials at Four Seasons Park July 24 to 26, where they lost to the the Lac La Biche Lumberjacks 18-11 in the semi-final game. The Lumberjacks went on to win the tournament, beating the Red Deer Braves 8-6 in the final.
The tournament marked the first time the Lightning players have played at such a high level, and head coach Travis Smith feels they did themselves proud.
“The level of competitiveness was up a notch or two, and being able to see that and play at that higher level was good,” he said. “It’s good to know that we can play with these guys.”
The Lightning’s game against the Stettler Sliders on Saturday was momentarily interrupted due to heavy rain, but that did nothing to halt the team’s momentum. After the diamond was cleared with the assistance of about 20 volunteers, the Lightning went on to win the game 16-4, in what Smith says was the highlight of his team’s weekend.
“(The tournament) was a different level of ball that the boys and the coaches ourselves had never seen before,” he said. “It was a very good experience.”