Category: 2023

Nolan Rivard Grand Slam Keeps Twins Alive

The NCABL post season has been interrupted temporarily as the Parkland Twins compete in the Western Canada Baseball Championship being hosted in Oak River, Manitoba. The Twins lost a close game in their tournament opener by dropping a 3-2 decision to the Manitoba Border All-Stars yesterday. The Twins were then blanked 12-0 at the hands of the Carlyle Cardinals. Today (Saturday, August 19, 2023), however, proved that the Twins could prevail against strong opposition as they bounced the Oak River Dodgers by a score of 8-4 on the strength of a Nolan Rivard grand slam home run in the sixth inning. The Twins will now wait to see what help they can get as the round robin continues to be played out.

Part 2 of 2 on the results from the Western Canada Baseball Championship in Manitoba

Unfortunately the stars did not align for the Parkland Twins as they were already mathematically eliminated from the tournament final when they met the South Delta Brewers in their last game of the round robin, a game they lost 13-4. That set the stage for a final pitting the Oak River Dodgers (4-1) against the Manitoba Border All-Stars (3-2). What can be taken away from this series is that the Twins dropped a game by one run to one finalist and were the only club to beat the other finalist and eventual Western Canada Champion Oak River Dodgers. The Twins should be satisfied with this outcome.

Cardinals Sweep While Red Lions Surge

McLean-Poll meant business when Manager Zach Pollard handed him the baseball in the first game of Series A at Keller Field last Saturday. The young Orioles, despite their four hit for four run performance were no match for the Cardinals on this day. No Red Bird was called upon to even break a sweat as McLean-Poll faced 27 batters while amassing a whopping 14 strike outs.

Line score: LCSFS A-#1



The Barrhead Orioles refused to give up despite a short bench which forced two injured players to remain in a game which was knotted up 2-2 after seven completed innings of play. Hardy Fischer, a young minor league pitcher, had a strong outing for the Orioles going five innings while allowing only 1 run on 3 hits. The Cardinals spread out their 7 hits with veterans Riopel and Shepert each getting two, while Zach Pollard, Jeff Morris, and Ryan Lehman notched one apiece. The floodgates opened in the extra inning as the Orioles could not answer the bell after the Cardinals punched in 4 runs in the top of the eighth. The Cardinals swept the Series and will advance to the League Championship Final Series for the first time in their eleven year history in the NCABL.

Line score: LCSFS A-#2



Jake Moger pitched a complete game victory for the Parkland Twins by effectively executing his pitches. Veterans Cassidy and Pasychnyk each led the Twins with two hits while six more hitters added singles resulting in two runs, enough to defeat the Red Lions led by the steady bat of Chris Brand who went 3 for 3 on the day. Corson Hanlan took the loss in a hard fought game reminiscent of old rivalries. The Twins walked away the victors with hopes of a second successive championship still burning strong.

Line score: LCSFS B-#1


PARKLAND TWINS101000x2100Win

The Red Lions opened with the wily veteran, Sean Beaudoin, on the mound. Beaudoin threw an array of off speed pitches and curve balls which seemed to fluster some of the Twin batters who came up empty handed during Beaudoin’s four innings of work. The Red Lion bench was itself in short supply of arms when Corson Hanlan was called in for his second appearance of the Series. Three highly effective innings later and the Twins had only managed two hits and a single run against Hanlan. In the meantime, the Red Lions had collected 12 runs on 13 hits and had provided their pitchers with a solid wall of defence led by their very versatile outfield.!

Line score: LCSFS B-#2


PARKLAND TWINS0000010166Loss

In the third and deciding game of this series, the Twins could not seem to recover from a less than stellar performance in game two. In a move reminiscent of those early days when Mike Gonas, a member of the Hall of Fame, was often called upon to pitch in two or more games in the same series, the Red Lions called upon Corson Hanlan to do the same. Hanlan responded by pitching a complete game in which he allowed only one unearned run on three hits to go along with five strikeouts. The Twins left the field having allowed 11 Red Lion hits to only 3 for the defending League Champions. Hayden Rake took the loss as the Red Lions claimed the right to make yet another appearance in the 2023 League Championship Series.

Line score: LCSFS B-#3


PARKLAND TWINS0000100133Loss

Cardinals End Long Pennant Drought

The St. Albert Cardinals came into the League with high aspirations for a quick ascent among the favourites to win a pennant and possibly a championship, both in quick order. Having graduated from a highly successful minor baseball program (SAMBA), this young team was expected to do well. But the road to success for the Cardinals has been anything but easy. Eleven long years later and after many painful lessons learned, the Cardinals have finally discovered what it really takes to become a champion. Perseverance and dedication are the underpinnings of success. This season, under Manager Zach Pollard, the club has seen an increased commitment from a core group of Cardinal players. The pitching staff is deeper led by Tanner McLean-Poll and solidified by veterans like Kevin Dryburgh and Mark Trela. Offensively, the Cardinals have come into their own with four players positioned among the top ten hitters in the League. Pollard, whose league leading .491 average, is being supported by the likes of outfielders Robert Sullivan (.419 average) and Luc Riopel (.368 average) and shortstop Ryan Lehman (.353 average). Although defensive lapses are still not uncommon on this club, the Cardinals are slowly addressing the importance of playing as a cohesive unit. With a combination of youthful new additions to their roster along with a maturing core of players and the leadership provided by a number of seasoned veterans, the 2023 Pennant Champion Cardinals will not cower under pressure. They are battle ready and the Series pitting them against the surging Orioles from Barrhead should prove to be very interesting.

Young Orioles Will Themselves Into The Post-Season

Manager Chase Visser did not hesitate when asked one week ago whether the Orioles would pounce upon the chance to make it into the post-season or simply fade away as they had done last year in their first season back into the League. His response was firm: “We’re ready and determined”. And the young Orioles certainly rolled into Fort Saskatchewan last Tuesday night to prove that their Manager wasn’t blowing hot air. The Orioles sliced up the hapless and struggling Reds and handed them a 16 -1 defeat to set the stage for last night’s match up at home with their rivals, the Westlock Red Lions. The Red Lions had travelled to St. Albert the night before to take on the pennant leading St. Albert Cardinals, leaving Legion Field with a 7 – 5 victory over the Cardinals. In a hard fought game at the Rec Grounds in Barrhead, the Orioles beat the odds by edging the Red Lions 4-3. That victory spelled a split in their series with Westlock this season, but more importantly it guaranteed a spot in the post-season for the Orioles who have shown splashes of excellence recently which has created a positive buzz in their dugout. They will face off against the eventual pennant champions in Series A of the LCSFS (League Championship Semi-Final Series). That series will be played at Keller Field in Westlock along with LCSFS B on August 12th and 13th. The first game in Series A will begin on Saturday at 10:00 AM with a second game scheduled to start at 4:00 PM that same day. Should a third and deciding game be necessary, it would be played at 1:00 PM on Sunday, August 13th.

All-Star Game Returns to Its Rural Roots

The 2023 All-Star Game returned to the friendly confines of Keller Field last  Sunday only to face a lot of adversity from mother nature. A torrential downpour early Sunday morning in Westlock had turned the infield and some parts of the outfield into a quagmire. A willing and determined grounds crew comprised of players from the Power Sports and Marine All-Stars spent all day sponging and raking and along with a warm summer sun managed to bring the field back to life.  Fans actually returned to the park after a four hour game delay and were not disappointed. Not only was the game well played by both clubs, but George and  Simone’s All-Star Dog Combo was a big hit as well. The night was warm and the traditional smells of a ballpark hotdog certainly captured the mood. 

The visitors opened the scoring in the top of the 1st after Visser had tripled and  Chies had followed with an RBI double. But the Beverly Optimist All-Stars responded with 2 hits while taking advantage of two hit batters to score 3 runs in their half of the inning. McLean-Poll, the starting pitcher for the home club,  allowed two hits but struck out two batters to deny the Power Sports and Marine  All-Stars any runs in the top of the second. Ryan Rivard faced only four batters while collecting three outs in his 2nd inning appearance. In the top of the third,  Nathan Brown drew a base on balls and followed that with two stolen bases,  eventually scoring on a passed ball to close the score to 3-2 with the Beverly  Optimist All-Stars still holding onto a lead they would not relinquish. Sean  Beaudoin had the best pitching performance of the day allowing no runs in his two innings of work while striking out 3 of the 6 batters he faced. Jake Moger returned the favour by allowing only one hit and no runs in his two innings of work for the Beverly Optimist All-Stars. The score remained 3-2 after four innings when Ryan Gregory took to the hill to record 3 strikeouts while giving up only one walk and a single hit. The versatile Chase Visser threw one inning for the  Power Sports and Marine All-Stars recording three quick outs including a  strikeout on only three batters faced. The home club put the game away by amassing 3 hits and scoring two additional runs off closer Nathan Brown. Rake  Hayden did the rest for the Optimist Club All-Stars by retiring three of the four batters he faced. Vaughn Rempel of the Twins was selected as the Most Valuable  Player of the All-Star Game by going two for three with two RBIs late in the game. 

The final score: Beverly Optimist Club All-Stars 5 Power Sports & Marine All-Stars 2.

Commissioner Paul Riopel with 2023 all-star game MVP Vaughn Rempel
Beverly Optimist All-Stars
Back row: Ryan Gregory, Zach Cox, Tanner McLean-Poll, Robert Sullivan, Brennan Flett, Jeff Morris, Hayden Rake, Zach Pollard
Front Row: Tanner Stawnichy, Jared Lamb, Vaughn Rempel, Jake Moger, Jarett Willson
Power Sports and Marine All-Stars
Back row: Kadin Chamzuk, Ryan Rivard, Hayden Chies, Chase Visser, Matt Quartel, Johnny Klein, Kaden Wiegand
Front Row: Nolan Rivard, Allen Borle, Nathan Brown, Cole Rivard, Colin Lovich, Sean Beaudoin

Beverly Optimist Club Inks New Sponsorship

The Beverly Optimist Club has supported amateur sports and more specifically baseball
within the NCABL for many years. Darrell Dingwall has been a long term Optimist Club
member and has been a strong supporter of the NCABL and its programs, particularly
the developmental programs involving umpire mentorship and the integration of minor
aged players into the mainstream rosters. Due to the four hour rain delay, Barry
Fredrickson (also pictured to the right of Commissioner Riopel) was unable to deliver
the ceremonial first pitch of the ball game. Equally satisfying for both Optimist Club
members, however, was the victory they posted (5 – 2) over the Westlock Power Sports
and Marine All-Stars.

Field Crew Saves The Day

With a new local sponsor in their back pocket, the Westlock Power Sports & Marine All-Stars were facing a wash out after an early and unexpected storm hit Keller Field hard on Sunday morning. Undaunted by the prospect of having the 2023 All-Star Game canceled, the Red Lions with help from the Orioles rolled up their sleeves and literally sponged all of the sitting water. The field crew then raked and re-raked from 10:00 a.m. until almost 5:00 pm. When Commissioner Riopel first saw the field in late morning, he was not confident that the boys on the crew could salvage the game. But after a huddle in the midfield, all were unanimous in wanting to give it their best shot and so the Commissioner was told to give them until 6:00 PM and to believe that a transformation was within their power to produce. You could say that their new name saw a fitting introduction to baseball on this day. The power it took to produce the sport these young men love saw them tackle the marine like field conditions and win. With the promise fulfilled, fans came back after a four hour game delay to witness a well played All-Star Game. That’s the spirit, boys. And another reason to cherish the legacy of sport in the Town of Westlock.

New Westlock Sponsor Steps Onto the Playing Field

On Sunday, July 23rd, the Power Sports and Marine All-Stars comprised of players from
the Red Lions and Orioles will be facing the Beverly Optimist All-Stars in the annual
NCABL All-Star Game at Keller Field in Westlock, Alberta. Game time is 2:00 PM.
The following players have been either voted in using a League wide balloting process or
selected by Management to participate in this year’s event.

Beverly Optimist All-Stars
Name#Designated Pos.Voted/NPTeam
Tanner McLean-Poll17PitcherVotedSt. Albert Cardinals
Jared Lamb5CatcherVotedParkland Twins
Zach Cox18First BaseVotedFort Saskatchewan Reds
Tanner Stawnichy25Second BaseVotedFort Saskatchewan Reds
Kirk Lachance10Third BaseVoted NPParkland Twins
Ryan Poeter15ShortstopVoted NPParkland Twins
Robert Sullivan13OutfieldVotedSt. Albert Cardinals
Vaughn Rempel27OutfieldVotedParkland Twins
Jake Moger4PitcherSelectedParkland Twins
Kyle Prather13PitcherSelectedFort Saskatchewan Reds
Ryan Gregory7PitcherSelectedFort Saskatchewan Reds
Hayden Rake47First BaseSelectedParkland Twins
Jeff Morris1First BaseSelectedSt. Albert Cardinals
Mason Franko27ShortstopSelectedFort Saskatchewan Reds
Jarrett Wilson77ShortstopSelectedSt. Albert Cardinals
Brennan Flett18OutfieldSelectedSt. Albert Cardinals
Zach Pollard11UtilitySelectedSt. Albert Cardinals
Zach Pollard11ManagerSt. Albert Cardinals
Randy Stawnichy39CoachFort Saskatchewan Reds
NP – designates a player who did not participate in the All-Star Game
Power Sports and Marine All-Stars
Name#Designated Pos.Voted/NPTeam
Chase Visser8OutfieldVotedBarrhead Orioles
Nathan Brown21UtilityVotedWestlock Red Lions
Ryan Rivard6PitcherSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Cole Rivard11PitcherSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Declan Kummer24First BaseSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Colin Lovich22Second baseSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Kaden Wiegand3Third BaseSelectedWestlock Red Lions
Sean Beaudoin9Third BaseSelectedWestlock Red Lions
Kadin Chamzuk43Third BaseSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Nolan Rivard7ShortstopSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Hayden Chies6OutfieldSelectedWestlock Red Lions
Allen Borle10OutfieldSelectedWestlock Red Lions
Matt QuartelNAOutfieldSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Johnny Klein86OutfieldSelectedBarrhead Orioles
Nate Day17UtilitySelectedWestlock Red Lions

Reserve the Twenty-third

Get ready to spend a leisurely afternoon of baseball entertainment in one of Alberta’s most
celebrated parks. Come on out to Keller Field in Westlock on the afternoon of Sunday, July
23rd, to cheer on your local representatives chosen to take part in this season’s All-Star Game. Players from across the entire league will be clashing to see who can claim to be true All-Stars. And while you’re at the park, do indulge in our All-Star Dog Combo which is sure to be a big hit with a hungry crowd. Admission is only $6 per person with children ten and under admitted free of charge. The All-Star Dog Combo will sell for a $5 bill. See you all at the ball game!

To The Core

Six years after the first pitch was ever thrown in the North Central Alberta Baseball League, an idea was born. What better way would there be to have a young promising baseball league achieve its full potential than to have within its ranks a dedicated group of umpires responsible for maintaining order and decorum according to the rules of the greatest game in America. And so, the baseball itself was unwound revealing the core in 1974. The core soon took on the NCABL’s personality and gritty approach to the game of baseball. The core was synonymous with respect for the game, proud representation of our League’s bold lettering (NCABL), and a tenacity no matter the weather for applying fair minded and knowledgeable practices throughout the course of a game. The most valuable and longest serving members of our core have a reverence for the plate, know its outline, and call its corners sacred ground. Many have contributed to the development of baseball in this province and beyond in various supervisory roles within Baseball Alberta and the National Program. Many have umpired in the largest and most prestigious baseball tournaments ever played in Alberta. Others have toiled in the educational realm of the game. Some have left us with memories of great and not so great calls. But all have left us touched to the core by their necessary presence within a game that demands that the rituals remain creating the mystique within this great game.

Winston Tuttle and Kevin Adam get ready to take to the field in one of the four official colours worn by the core of umpires in the NCABL.

Long Time Sports Enthusiast Passes

Kevin Hardman’s passage through life saw him touch down on many baseball diamonds, hockey rinks, football fields, and soccer pitches.  All along the way, Kevin brought with him his love of the games being played and his appreciation of the athletes so engaged in playing them.  Hardman’s appreciation of the sports he most loved translated into a passion for collecting memorabilia and for meeting the greats who played these games at both the amateur and professional levels.  Gifted with a razor sharp memory for recollecting sporting events of significance, Kevin was an avid reader of sports memoirs and had an acumen for elevating his conversations with precise statistical data.  If one word could adequately describe Kevin, “enthusiasm” would emerge in living colour. That enthusiasm for the “virtues of sport” led him to dedicate countless volunteer hours to the menial tasks which too many of us disregard as unimportant, but which Kevin viewed as a way of respecting the sport and honouring those athletes who played the game.  From cutting the outfield grass to carting bags of gear from one baseball park to another, to organizing team socials in his humble holiday trailer, to coaching younger athletes, Kevin gave of himself and brought his enthusiastic demeanour to everyone with whom he was connected.  A gentle soul with a kindly spirit hovered over a baseball field today leaving us saddened but appreciative that he had passed our way.  God bless you my friend,

Submitted by Paul Riopel

Commissioner, NCABL


February 15Deadline for the provision of home dates and black out dates to the Official Scorer.
March 15Distribution of a first draft schedule to all clubs by the Official Scorer.
March 22Deadline for the acceptance of club requests for final changes to the draft schedule.
March 27Spring Bi-Annual Board of Governors Meeting. Scheduled for 7:00 – 10:00 pm
Location: Morinville Community Cultural Centre. Address: 9502, 100 ave.,
Morinville, Alberta.
April 15NCABL Annual Umpire Meeting. Scheduled for 10:00 am – 1:00 pm Location:
Morinville Leisure Centre. Address: East of Morinville on 100th ave.
April 29Official Scoring Clinic: Morinville Community High School @ 9506, 100 ave.,
Morinville, Alberta.
Time: 09:00 A.M . Session 1 starts for beginners and non-accredited scorers. 12:30 P.M. Lunch for all registrants included. 1:00 P.M. Session 2 starts for all accredited scorers including beginners and non-accredited scorers. The clinic will end at 4:00 P.M. Pre-registration is required. Simply e-mail leaving your name, an e-mail address, and cell phone number. Free to all NCABL scorers. A course fee of $35 for all non-NCABL scorers due and payable at the door. Cash or check only.
May 10Opening Day
June 1NCABL player registration deadline.
June 15NCABL player pick-up deadline for clubs entering Baseball Alberta competition.
July 1NCABL late player registration deadline.
July 1Umpire selections’ deadline to League Office for LCSFS and LCFS assignments.
Non binding club option.
July 1NCABL All-Star Club balloting deadline.
NCABL standings cut-off date for All-Star Club allocations.
July 23NCABL All-Star Game. First pitch @ 2:00 PM Location: Keller Field, Westlock
August 1Nomination deadline for the Ken Schultz Memorial Award.
August 1Balloting deadline for the Most Promising Junior Player Award.
August 1Balloting deadline for the Manager of the Year Award.
August 1Nomination deadline for a Fan of the Year recognition: optional and limited to one candidate per club per season. Free admission to all post-season play for recognized fans.
August 1Nomination deadline for the most valuable player of the year award
August 4Balloting deadline for the NCABL Most Valuable Player of the Year.
August 11Deadline date for regular season play.
August 12LCSFS A and B begins at Keller Field in Westlock with games at 10:00, 13:00, and 16:00.
August 13LCSFS A and B concludes at Keller Field in Westlock Alberta. Game times TBA.
August 17 – 21Parkland Twins away to Manitoba to compete in the Western Canada Baseball Championship.
August 18 – 20Western Canada Baseball Championship in Manitoba.
August 25League Championship Final Series (LCFS): Game #1
Hosted by the top regular season finisher among the semi-finalist qualifiers
August 26League Championship Final Series (LCFS): Game #2
Hosted by the lower regular season finisher among the semi-finalist qualifiers
August 27League Championship Final Series (LCFS): Game #3 (if necessary)
Hosted by the top regular season finisher among the semi-finalist qualifiers
August 28League Championship Final Series (LCFS): Rain out date
September 15Baseball Alberta Awards nomination deadline
Baseball Alberta Scholarship Application deadline
OctoberNCABL Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (2nd)
Site, date, and time: TBA
November 4NCABL Fall Bi-Annual Meeting: Site: TBA. Time: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM