For three straight days, slo-pitch teams battled each other until the winners emerged at the annual Sam Steele ball tournament this past weekend.
Hosted by Moir Park and the Kinsmen Quad ball diamonds, roughly 72 teams playing in four different competitive divisions all day, all night, and sometimes into the early hours of the morning in one of Western Canada’s largest slo-pitch tournaments.
With $1,000 in prize money on the line in the competitive division, Riot came through to beat DITB for the win. Teams in the recreation divisions were given apparel and other prizes for their efforts that added up to roughly $10,000.
Once again, the tournament was organized by a conglomerate of local groups—the Cranbrook Minor Ball Association, Cranbrook Mixed Slo-Pitch, Cranbrook Bandits, and the men’s baseball team—with all profits going back into improving baseball facilities in Cranbrook.
Last year, the funds went into making a new batting cage at Confederation Park, but this year, getting bathrooms at the diamonds in Moir Park is the priority.
“The biggest thing is that the money that we’re raising is going back into the bathrooms at Moir [Park] at the ball parks,” said Seana-Lee Coolbaugh, the president of the Cranbrook minor ball association. “Any money raised from this tournament goes back into the ball fields.”
Teams came in from as far away as Edmonton, with most of them looking to have some fun, while a select few came to play some serious, competitive slo-pitch.
“Overall, it was awesome, it was really good,” Coolbaugh said. “The weather was excellent, people were really nice and seemed to enjoy themselves.”
1st – Riot
2nd – DITB
1st – Junk
2nd – Tribal
1st – Sioux Mob
2nd – Koko Beach Tanning & Hair Salon
1st – Rez Boys
2nd – Cranbrook Vision Care