The Prince Albert Under-16 Aces are rounding into form ahead of hosting the U16 ‘A’ Girls Softball provincial championship later this month.
For the third time in as many years, the Aces captured the Girls Prairie League Softball championship as they took home the MacLean-Ross Cup on Sunday, June 23 after rattling off a 4-0 record in Lloydminster.
“One of the big advantages of being in the league is the number of games that you get to play as we’ll have at least 20 games under our belt before we even get to the provincials,” Aces coach Devon Kolosa said.
“It also allows you to give the kids an opportunity to play in different positions and also see where you are as a team. Obviously, you would like to have a great regular season, but we often find that it doesn’t always matter where you are ranked when the playoffs get started.”
After posting a 9-3 overall mark at tournaments in Prince Albert and St. Albert to earn the third overall seed, the Aces cruised to 8-0 victories over the St. Albert Angels and the Red Deer Rage to advance into the championship round.
They ended up playing the top-ranked Sherwood Park Storm twice to determine the champion and came away with 4-3 and 8-7 triumphs to win another league title.
“Sherwood Park is a very good team and both games came right down to the wire,” Kolosa said.
“We were down in the fifth inning of our second game against them and we had a good talk with the girls. They were pumped up and ready to go after that and they scored seven runs to take the lead.”
Although the provincials won’t take place until July 19-21 at Max Power Ball Parks, the Aces will have a few exhibition games over the next couple of weeks to make sure that they are still on top of their game.
“We’re going to be going up against the U19 Spirit from Melfort and the Saskatoon Hustlers over the next week, plus we also have a few contests lineup with our U19 Aces,” Kolosa said.
The Aces are in the Green Pool for the provincials, with their first round-robin game taking place on Friday, July 19 at 10:30 a.m. against the Saskatoon Lasers.
The Saskatoon Raiders, Regina Royals, Lumsden Cubs and the Southeast Hawks from Oxbow are also in the Aces’ pool.
The other pool features the Saskatoon Phantoms, Regina Fighting Saints, Moose Jaw Ice, the Hustlers and the Twin City Angels from Warman.