Getting back in the swing

Efforts are being made to resurrect slopitch in the Comox Valley for those on the far side of 55.

A local team known as the Rebels used to compete in a league.

“Once the senior Rebels became defunct the last 10 years ago or so, the junior Rebels started to do exhibition games on a regular basis with Port Alberni, Campbell River, Parksville and Nanaimo,” co-ordinator Ernest Kassian said. “That fell by the wayside because we didn’t have any funding…We have virtually nothing here.”

Parksville, which had funding, started a house league with about a dozen teams.

In the last five years, Kassian played with the junior Rebels 55-plus men’s team that has competed at the BC Seniors Games, and other tournaments. It then became a co-ed team.

The junior Rebels have transformed into Ronnie’s Rebels.

“That team has gone on a fairly regular basis to the Seniors Games, as well,” he said. “We did last year. At that time I started to pull the older members, and other people in the community, and said, ‘Would you be interested in a senior’s slopitch league?’”

For several years, Kassian has been involved in slopitch in Sun City, Arizona. He has also served as president of the Regina Slopitch Association.

“There is a lot of interest (locally). It’s long overdue for Courtenay and Comox.”

At an upcoming organizational meeting, Kassian hopes some of the better players become captains and help with orientation sessions. He hopes to garner enough interest to make four teams.

If the league comes into fruition, teams would play on a weekday morning, possibly twice a week.

“You would have that regular play,” Kassian said, noting the no-sliding league would have slight modifications. “Participation is the main thing.”

Interested players are encouraged to attend a meeting at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 29 at Lewis Park. Come to the main ball diamond.

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