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Cranbrook Bandits host tournament this weekend

‘A’ and ‘B’ teams to participate in Wood Bat Invitational from Friday to Sunday at Confederation Park
Cranbrook Bandits ‘B’ player Will Doerksen slides towards home plate during a 2017 pre-season game against the 14U Calgary Redbirds. (Brad McLeod Photo)

Both Cranbrook Bandits teams will be at home this weekend, as the organization will be hosting four other teams for a tournament.

The 2017 Bandits Wood Bat Invitational will feature both the U19 ‘A’ team and the U17 ‘B’ team, along with the Mission Valley Mariners, the Calgary Redbirds, the Calgary Jr Dinos Yellow team, and the Lethbridge Miners ‘B’ squad.

Each team will play three round-robin games on Saturday and Sunday before the championship and consolation games take place on Sunday.

“There are some teams to be played [that we haven’t faced before] but they are all going to be the same calibre,” said ‘A’ team head coach Paul Mrazek. “The Lethbridge team might be a little bit younger, but if you don’t play the game right, then it’s going to go sideways on [us].”

The Bandits ‘A’ team will kick off the weekend at 1:00 p.m. on Friday with a game against the Dinos, a new club from the Absolute Baseball Academy, at Confederation Park.

The ‘B’ team will play their first game against the Redbirds at 6:00 p.m. to close out the opening day’s action in Cranbrook.

On Saturday, the Bandits ‘B’ team will play a game against the Calgary Dinos at 9:00 a.m at Coronation Park in Kimberley. It will be the only match of the tournament played outside of Cranbrook.

At 10:30 a.m. back at Confederation Park, the ‘A’ Bandits will play Lethbridge and at 3:30 the Miners will play the ‘B’ Bandits. The round robin will conclude with a 6:00 p.m. game between the ‘A’ team and the Redbirds.

On Sunday, the 5th place game will be held at 9:00 a.m., the bronze medal game at 11:15 a.m. and the tournament championship will be played at 2 p.m.

“We’re looking forward to it,” said ‘B’ head coach Ryan Phillips-Clement. “I’ve told the guys [last weekend] that we need to come prepared to practice this upcoming week because we’ll be facing some of the A teams.”

The home tournament is the third pre-season weekend competition for the Cranbrook Bandits ‘A’ team. They will start their regular season play on the road against the Eureka Rangers on May 31.

The ‘B’ team have played 8 pre-season games so far this year and have won all of them. They will begin their regular season against the Mission Valley Mariners on June 4.

Full Schedule:

Friday, May 26:

1:00 p.m. - Cranbrook ‘A’ vs. Calgary Jr. Dinos

3:30 p.m. - Mission Valley vs. Lethbridge

6:00 p.m. - Cranbrook ‘B’ vs. Calgary Redbirds

Saturday, May 27:

8:00 a.m. - Calgary Redbirds vs. Mission Valley

9:00 a.m. - Cranbrook ‘B’ vs. Calgary Jr. Dinos (Coronation Park, Kimberley)

10:30 a.m. - Cranbrook ‘A’ vs. Lethbridge

1:00 p.m. - Calgary Jr. Dinos vs. Mission Valley

3:30 p.m. - Lethbridge vs. Cranbrook ‘B’

6:00 p.m. - Calgary Redbirds vs. Cranbrook ‘A’

Sunday, May 28:

9:00 a.m. - 5th place vs. 6th place

11:15 a.m. - 3rd place vs. 4th place

2:00 p.m. - 1st place vs. 2nd place (Tournament Championship Game)