Group of students on Langley High School’s Sports Day

Langle Advance has 85 years of sports coverage

The Langley Advance at 85: Baseball always big here but all kinds of sports have been popular over the years.

Baseball has always been big in Langley. Case in point – the very first sports story to run in the Langley Advance, on July 23, 1931.

It made the front page:

Baseball Boys get Short end of 3-0 Tilt

A large turnout of supporters followed the local United Baseball team to Ladner on Wednesday evening where they saw a nice game but were disappointed in the score of 3-0 against their home team.

The game was handled satisfactorily by Nick Nickerbocker.

On Friday evening, the 24th, these two teams will face off again on the Langley Athletic Grounds at 6:15 and it is hoped that a large gathering will be present to cheer the boys on to victory.

The loser of the game will meet Cloverdale in a series of three games for second place, and the winner of this series will play the winner of Friday night’s game for the final.

P. Porter will handle the game.

For decades to follow, the Advance has been the source of sports happenings in the community.

Here are some of the sports-related stories pulled from our files.

Aug. 4, 1932

Langley United baseball team defeated Ladner 2-1 in the opening game of a best-of-five series for the Delta League title.

Jan. 25, 1934

B.C. boxing champ Allan Todd was slated to take on challenger Reggie Ryan at Langley Athletic Hall.

Aug. 5, 1954

Langley Prairie’s midget boys’ softball team won the B.C. championship with two straight wins on the Aldergrove diamond.

Aug. 13, 1964

Sports history was made when the Langley Little League All-Stars defeated Portland 5-4 in Carnarvon Park in Vancouver. The win gave the local team the Pacific Northwest championship and took them one step closer to the Little League World Series.

Aug. 20, 1964

Pacific Northwest champion Langley All-Stars were knocked out of the running for the Little League World Series when the local squad was defeated by a team from California.

Nov. 8, 1973

Langley Civic Centre, built at a cost of $1,750,000, was officially opened with a formal presentation of the keys to Township Mayor George Preston. (The civic centre was renamed George Preston Recreation Centre after the former mayor’s death in 2006.)

Jan. 24, 1974

With 17 games left to play, the Langley Lords had a whopping 19-point lead in the B.C. Junior Hockey League’s coastal division.

Feb. 28, 1974

Barry Beck, later to become a star defenceman with the NHL’s New York Rangers, was one of three Langley Lords named to the B.C. Junior Hockey League’s all-star team.

Lords goalie Mark Earp and coach Gil Lundhin also joined the all-star squad.

Nov. 9, 1983

Langley Eagles set a B.C. junior hockey league record by winning 14 consecutive games.

Aug. 26, 1992

Langley members of the Fraser Valley Chiefs baseball team in Fort Lauderdale for the world championships in their age division felt lucky to have survived Hurricane Andrew’s devastating blast through Florida.

“Langley never looked so good,” remarked 17-year-old Chris McGregor upon his return home.

PHOTO: Members of the Bowling family with the Fort Langley baseball team. The men on either side of the man that appears to be the coach are Tom and Donald Bowling.1952 (Langley Centennial Museum Photo 5624)

Related stories:

Langley Advance history

Bob Groeneveld: from reporter to editor to columnist

Langley then and now

Museum home to many Langley Advance treasures

Sports reporter Troy Landreville recounts 21 years in newspapers

Publisher Lisa Farquharson grew up in Langley

Langley Advance vintage prices

Editor Roxanne Hooper and storytelling

Longtime residents recall the Langley Advance

Langley’s chamber history mirrors the newspaper

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