The Kelowna Heat returned home with some hardware from the provincial U16 B girls fastball championship last weekend in Port Alberni.
The Heat posted a solid 6-3 record over three days of competition to claim the bronze medal.
Kelowna opened the round robin 16-team tourney with a 1-0 loss to Langley, but then rebounded with three straight wins over Richmond (8-2), West Kootenay (12-4) and Surrey Storm 98 (5-4).
A fourth-place effort in the round robin advanced the Heat to the playoffs where the Kelowna girls opened with a 6-4 win over the South Delta Invaders.
The next playoff game saw the Heat jump out to an early 5-0 lead, only to see Surrey Storm rally back for an 8-5 win.
Kelowna, facing a must-win situation to stay alive, then defeated the PoCo Ravens 10-3.
The Heat’s march to a medal continued with a thrilling 6-5 extra inning win over the Abbotsford Outlaws as Kelowna executed when they had to on both defence and offense.
The Heat then lost 4-3 to Storm 97 to fall one step short of reaching the gold medal game.
Heat manager Kevin Fedorak says there were many individual and team highlights throughout the weekend.
“Very timely home runs from Emma Gilbert, Taylor Kathler, and Tova Turnbull as well as a spectacular .522 batting average by Emma Lewis generated many of the 55 runs scored in nine games,” said Fedorak. “Fifty-one innings of strong pitching shared between Ann-Marie Crandlemire, Gina Selfe, Bailie Keating, and Julia Lambert kept the competitions on edge at the plate. Catching duties were shared by Shelby Severson and Nicole Fedorak who were very strong and kept base runners from advancing. The defense of Lora Miki, Sara Miki, Carissa Kearney, Candice Vuong, and Shayla Tyerman was second to none as difficult catches and strong throws resulted in the competition scoring only 35 runs in nine games.”
The Heat coaches are Doug Fisher and Dan Lambert.