A piece of Kelowna baseball history will be made Wednesday night at Edith Gay Park.
At 6 p.m., for the first time in B.C. Baseball 18U AAA play, the defending champion Kelowna Sun Devils will take on the COMBA (Central Okanagan Minor Baseball Assoc.) Sun Devils.
The Kelowna club is heading into its fourth campaign at the provincial midget AAA level, while COMBA is kicking off its inaugural season in the B.C. league.
“It’s exciting,” said Kelowna Sun Devils head coach Rob Law. “Two teams gives a lot more kids in Kelowna the chance to play some elite level ball.”
The Sun Devils decided to form two teams for the 2018 season, after seeing big numbers turn out for both fall ball and tryouts this winter.
The Kelowna team opened up the new season on the right foot with a 16-3 thrashing of the Canadians Saturday in Vernon.
Jordan Laidlaw took to the hill, went six innings and struck out eight for the win. Nathan Ringness-Law struck out the side in the seventh. Tyson Lamb (3 RBI, 3 SB) and Nathan Ringness-Law (3 RBI, 3 SB) paced the offense. Connor Lamb had two hits and three RBIs, while Blake Badger had a pair of RBIs.
The Kelowna Sun Devils will host their home opener this Saturday against North Island.
Prior to the first game, at around 11: 30 a.m, the Sun Devils will hold a ceremony to unveil a championship board, featuring the names of the players and coaches who were on the 2017 club. The board will be installed on the clubhouse at Edith Gay Park.
COMBA wins 2
The COMBA Sun Devils set a positive tone for their inaugural season, taking two of three games from the hometown Vernon Canadians.
On Saturday, COMBA won 10-1. Pitchers Alex Thompson and Zev Demman combined for a one-hitter in five innings of work. At the plate, Nolan Bird went 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored, while Matt Aschenbrenner had two hits and three RBIs.
In Sunday’s opener, the Sun Devils prevailed 10-5 over the Canadians. Aschenbrenner went five innings to earn the win, while Matt McKenzie finished with two innings of solid relief. COMBA brought a well-rounded offense with 14 hits. Zev Demman was 2-for-4 with an RBI and stolen base, while Caleb Noa had two hits and three RBIs.
Vernon came back to win the finale 13-6. Nolan Bird went 3-for-3, while Spencer Grieve, Fin Nye and Jordan Graham had two hits apiece.
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