UPDATED: South Vancouver captures B.C. Little League title in Walnut Grove

For the South Vancouver all-stars, the road to the Canadian championship tournament ran through Walnut Grove.

South Vancouver blanked White Rock 8-0 late Monday afternoon, in the final of the 2014 Little League BC Provincial Championship at Walnut Grove Park’s George Zarrelli Majors Diamond.

South Vancouver will now represent B.C. at the Canadian championship in Valleyfield, Quebec.

Whichever team wins the national title will wear Canada’s colours at the Little League World Series in Williamsport.

The B.C. finalists emerged from their semifinal games on Sunday, with South Vancouver blanking Beacon Hill 12-0, and White Rock defeating Little Mountain 10-4.

Foul mid-week weather put a bit of a damper on the tournament, hosted by North Langley Little League.

The July 19-27 competition brought together six district 11/12 majors champions from across the province. The North Langley all-stars received an automatic berth into the provincials as the host team.

Mother Nature was a factor midway through the week, with all three of the Wednesday, July 23 games were postponed due to rain.

Teams managed to stay somewhat dry last Thursday, July 24, when the tournament resumed, with the host North Langley all-stars notching their first win of the week by doubling Forest Hills 4-2.

North Langley wrapped up its tournament with a 14-0 loss to Little Mountain on Saturday.

While the hosts had a tough time facing extremely very tough competition, the event as whole was a huge success, said tournament chair Mike Fredo.

“We had nothing but very positive comments from all of the teams, coaches and parents who came out to support their teams,” Fredo said. “Our field was in tip-top shape and it looked fantastic, and every coach mentioned that it was one of the nicest fields they had ever played on.”

The baseball was very high calibre, with “real good teams who handled themselves tremendously,” Fredo said.

“It was fun to watch and see how the boys and girls really enjoyed playing baseball and tried their best at all times, yet also had a lot of fun during and after the games,” he said. “Good sportsmanship was evident at every game.”

Rain, especially when it was as heavy as it was last week, is pretty rare for mid- to- late July but that’s what tournament organizers had to deal with midway through the tourney.

And while the July 23 rain-outs were unfortunate, Fredo commended the field crew for getting the George Zarrelli diamond and outfield ready for play the very next day.

“And many thanks to the volunteers who came out every day to help in the concession, or to keep score, to keep track of the pitch count or to help set up and take down all the tents and tables and chairs that were needed on a daily basis,” Fredo added. “The volunteer help was fabulous and we cannot thank them enough.”

Fredo believes North Langley Little League put on a great tournament for the teams, and that the tournament committee members “did a fabulous job of planning for this event.”

It took about a year of planning for this tournament, and Fredo believes it paid off.

“Looking back on it on Monday night after the last game, we all said we had a great time and would do it again, but maybe not for a couple of years,” Fredo added.

The Canadian Little League championship in Valleyfield starts today July 31) and runs until next Wednesday, Aug. 6 in Valleyfield.

Visit the B.C. championship’s website by clicking here.

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