For the second year in a row, the Kelowna Blue Jays returned home with a bronze medal from the Softball B.C. U14 C provincial championship.
Representing the Kelowna Minor Fastball Society, the Jays dropped their opening game of the 16-team tourney, but rebounded with three straight victories to finish third in Pool A after round robin play.
The opening game of the playoffs on Saturday night saw the Abbotsford Phantoms edge the Blue Jays 4-3 in six innings, putting Kelowna in a must-win situation for the rest of the double-knockout tournament.
On Sunday morning, the Blue Jays responded to the challenge with an 8-0 win over the Vancouver Green Socks 8-0 and an 11-6 victory over the North Shore Angels.
Kelowna then survived a tough challenge to get into the medal round with a 3-2 win over the Central Saanich Extreme. A steal of home by the Blue Jays in the fifth inning was the difference.
In their final game at provincials, the Blue Jays again faced the Abbotsford Phantoms.
The Phantom scored five times in the first three innings, holding the Blue Jays off the score board until top of the fifth. With some strong hitting and aggressive base running the Blue Jays rallied to put three runs on the board but fell short of their comeback as time expired in the sixth inning.
Coach Kurt Kover was pleased with the Jays’ bronze medal performance and their effort all season long.
“I am so proud of how far our team has come this year,” said Kover. “Our girls never quite, they never gave up on themselves or each other.
“They believed they were a good team and always supported each other. Our girls never lost this year because they always learned.”