The startup Orange Sox boys softball team is looking for players to compete in the 2020 and 2022 B.C. Summer Games. (Pixabay)

New Island team aimed at rejuvenating boys softball

Orange Sox hope to play in 2020 and 2022 B.C. Summer Games

Shaun Myall hopes to take the colour orange and make it gold this summer.

The veteran coach is heading up a pilot program under the sponsorship of Softball B.C. to return an Island boys’ fastball team to the B.C. Summer Games.

“The Orange Sox program is unique,” Rick Benson, executive director of Softball B.C., said. “This is the first time anywhere in the province where somebody has started a program like this for boys’ fastpitch.”

“We’re really interested to see how this develops out. It could be an example for other urban areas.”

The need for the program, aimed at 13 to 16 year old boys, is more out of necessity than need.

For the past decade, boys’ softball number have dwindled in the province’s urban areas, as teen boys take up baseball, soccer and other sports during the summer.

RELATED: Countdown starts to 2020 BC Summer Games

The situation was dire two years when the Island failed – for the first time – to field a boys’ softball team for the B.C. Summer Games.

It was then that Myall approached Softball B.C. with a plan to create a development program that would field a team in both the 2020 and 2022 B.C. Summer Games.

“The O’Sox program is to increase awareness of the sport on Vancouver Island,” Myall said.

Myall hopes to register 45 players this summer between the ages of 13 to 19.

Those older than 16 can’t play in the B.C. Summer Games, but they can participate in the U20 and U19 provincial championships under the Orange Sox banner, he said.

“We’re trying to get players back into the game. The Island has a rich lineage of producing world-class players that have represented local B.C. cities in regional, provincial, national and international play,” Myall said.

So far, Myall has interest from 12 players as he recruits from Port Hardy to Victoria. He hopes to host free clinics this spring in Port Alberni, Nanaimo, Victoria and Campbell River. A full training camp is planned for March. The team will be based in Saanich.

And Myall isn’t looking for the most gifted players.

“It doesn’t matter what skill level they have – even if they’ve never played the game – we want them in the program,” he said.

Help is also needed on the program’s management and coaching sides.

For more information, please go online to www.osox.ca.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BC GamesSoftball

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberni Valley fire departments hold car wash to raise funds for Wounded Warriors Run

Come out Feb. 22 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to learn more about the run

67th year for Port Alberni’s men’s open bonspiel

Public is welcome to cheer on teams throughout the weekend

Alberni Valley residents vent anger over proposed Beaver Creek cannabis project

Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District grapples with limited authority to restrict operations

Paper Excellence, owner of Crofton mill, hit by malware

Paper production in Crofton, and other mills, impacted by incident

B.C. NDP’s throne speech speaks of benefits to B.C., says MLA Scott Fraser

Fraser agrees to meet with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs over pipeline

HIGHLIGHTS: Day one and two at the 2020 BC Winter Games

Athletes had sunny – but cold – weather to work with in Fort St. John

Tyler Toffoli scores twice, Canucks crush Bruins 9-3

Stecher, Miller each add three points for Vancouver

Zamboni driver, 42, earns NHL win over Maple Leafs

Emergency goalie called into action for Carolina Hurricanes

Governor general says multiple solutions needed for ‘complicated’ overdose issue

Julie Payette met at a fire hall with firefighters and police officers as well as politicians and health experts

Landlord ordered to pay $11K after harassing B.C. mom to move days after giving birth

Germaine Valdez was pressured to move just a few days after giving birth by C-section to her child

Heart attacks strike B.C. husband and wife just over one year apart

Courtenay couple share personal stories to bring awareness to heart month

‘Nothing surprises us anymore:’ U.S. border officials find brain in package

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents found the brain packed in a glass mason jar in a Canada Post shipment

B.C., Ottawa sign sweeping 30-year deal for northern caribou habitat

West Moberly, Saulteau co-manage new protection on two million acres

Eyes on police after Trudeau orders blockades torn down, injunctions enforced

The RCMP in B.C. have sent a letter to the traditional leaders of the Wet’suwet’en Nation

Most Read