1956 Vancouver & Area Game Reports     

1956 Vancouver, Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley 
1956 BC Interior 
1956 Vancouver Island

INDUSTRIAL LEAGUE (7 inning games)

(April 29)   It was Joe Donegan Day as the Vancouver Industrial League kicked off the 1956 season at Powell Grounds. Vancouver Mounties general manager Ced Tallis presented Donegan with a trophy signifying his 10 years as an active player in the league.  Tallis then threw out the first ball and a crowd of 2,000 settled down to watch Nisei whip Western Bridge 12-1.  Elmer Mori drove in four runs with a pair of doubles. Ron Montgomery held Western to one-hit in going the distance for the win.

Gary Zailo (L), Ron Curby (3) and Bill Taylor
Ron Montgomery (W) and George Oikawa

(April 30)   Neil Dredge knocked in four runs with a pair of singles to spark the Boilermakers to a 7-6 win over Longshoremen Monday.

(May 1)   Rod MacKay blanked the Firefighters on two-hits Tuesday as CYO notched a 3-0 victory. MacKay fanned 11 and walked none.

Ian McLennan (L) and Carl Johnson
Rod MacKay (W) and Bobo Sikorski

(May 2)   Boilermakers scored five runs in the first inning and cruised to a 6-3 win over Nisei Wednesday. Al Parks went the distance with a three-hitter for the win. 

Art Limber, Eddie Yamamura (1) and Danny Okano
Al Parks (W) and Doug Beckett

(May 4)  Cal Murphy was an offensive force Friday as CYO dumped the Longshoremen 8-1. The first baseman accounted for four runs with a run-scoring double, a two-run single and a steal of home. Bobo Sikorski also had a two-bagger for CYO and Ken Mitchell had a double for the Longshoremen. Ernie Gurniak went the route for the win.

Tensman, Harrison (3) and Miller
Gurniak (W) and Sikorski

(May 6)   Nisei 14 Firemen 2, Boilermakers 7 CYO 3

(May 11)   Ken Digby tossed a two-hit shutout as Longshoremen downed Nisei 4-0 to take over second place in the Industrial Baseball League standings. 

Digby (W) and Miller
Yamamura (L), Franks (6) and Okano

( May 13)  Firemen topped the Boilermakers 8-6 before 1,500 fans at Powell Grounds Sunday night.  The winners thrilled the crowd with a triple play in the first inning.  With none out and the bases loaded, Boilermaker Bill Caswell smashed a drive to shortstop Charlie Esplin who threw to John Bunyon, catching the runner at third. Bunyon flipped to second sacker Pete Eades to made the final out.

Grant Hammond, Gray Winbow (5) and Bill Caswell
Don Smith, Lorne Fuller (5) and Carl Johnson

Don Wilson(May 14)   Don Wilson's (left) one-hitter highlighted Western Bridge's 6-1 victory over Nisei Monday night. Wilson went the distance with nine strikeouts in the seven inning game.

Gary McCullough (L) and Danny Okano
Don Wilson (W) and Bill Taylor

(May 15)   Barry Arnett laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to score Leo Ius with the winning run in the bottom of the 7th and final inning to give Longshoremen an 8-7 win over Boilermakers.  Ius had earlier knocked in two runs with three doubles.  Grant Hammond picked up the win in relief of starter Walt Brown.

Al Parks, Walt Brown (7), Grant Hammond (7) and Bill Caswell
Gene McCarthy, Don Harrison (4), Ken Digby (7) and Al Miller, John Vickers (6)

(May 16)   CYO downed the Fireman 7-1 before a crowd of 2,000 at Powell Grounds Wednesday night. Rookie Clare Bonner hurled a four-hitter for the win. George Keeley paced a 12-hit CYO attack with a two-run homer in the first inning. The victory moved CYO into a first place tie with Boilermakers, each with four victories.

Clare Bonner (W) and Bobo Sikorski
Bill Cousins (L) and Carl Johnson

(May 17)   Nisei took a 6-0 lead then held off a late rally by the Boilermakers to notch a 6-5 victory Thursday night. Errors hurt the losers as they allowed two unearned runs in the 3rd and another pair in the 5th.  Boilermakers erupted for five runs in the 7th and final frame but fell just short. Ron Montgomery went the distance for the win.

Walt Brown, Grant Hammond (3), Gary Winbow (6) and Bill Caswell
Ron Montgomery (W) and Danny Okano

(May 18)   Ron Curby was the story at Powell Grounds Friday night as Western Bridge demolished the Firemen 17-3 in a game called after just five innings.  The veteran hurler picked up the win with a five-hitter but it was his work at the plate which drew the attention. Curby smashed a grand slam homer in the first inning and followed with a two-run single in the third. Doug Adams knocked in four runs with three hits.

Don Smith (L), Lorne Fuller (2), Lorne Drummond (3) and Carl Johnson
Ron Curby (W) and Bill Taylor

(May 23)   Longshoremen downed Western Bridge 6-3 in a six-inning contest Wednesday at Powell Grounds. The crowd of 2,000 was treated to a baseball rarity, a triple steal.  With the bases full on walks, Longshoreman shortstop Ray Marshall scampered to home from third followed by Nick Craig who advanced to third and Ritchie Foster who made it safely to second.  The winning run came in the third inning on an error.

Gary Zailo, Don Wilson (2) and Bill Taylor
Nick Craig, Ken Digby (3) and Al Miller

(May 25)   Longshoremen rang up six runs in the first inning and coasted to a 10-3 victory over Fireman Friday night.  Ken Digby went all the way for the winners allowing seven hits. 

Ken Digby (W) and Al Miller
Bill Cousins (1), Don Smith (1), Lorne Drummond (4) and Charlie Esplin

(May 26)  Western Bridge topped Boilermakers 8-1 Saturday as Frank Kozak and Gary Zailo led a 10-hit attack with home runs.

Curby (W) and Taylor
Parks (L), Hammond (1), Winbow (5) and Beckett, Caswell (5)

(May 27)   Nisei will have to wait until Wednesday to try and break their second place tie with Longshoremen. The two teams fought to a 6-6 draw Sunday. Nisei scored in the top of the 7th and final inning to escape with a tie.

Ron Montgomery and Okano
Hemmerling, Craig (6) and Miller

(May 28)   Frank Kozak ripped a two-run homer in the 6th inning to give Western Bridge a 5-4 win over CYO in Industrial League action at Powell Grounds. Bobo Sikorski belted a pair of doubles for the losers.

Rod MacKay (L) and Bobo Sikorski
Alf Miki, Ron Curby (6) and Bill Taylor, Frank Kozak (6)

(May 30)   Ron Montgomery tossed a four-hitter as Nisei coasted to an 11-1 triumph over Western Bridge Wednesday night. 

Venturato (L), Wilson (4), Curby (5), Zailo (5) and Kozak
Montgomery (W) and Okano

(June 1)   CYO grabbed sole possession of second place in the Industrial League standings Friday with a 6-1 decision over Firemen.  Left fielder Lyle Levy got CYO on the board with a double in the 3rd to score Harvey Craig.  With catcher Bobo Sikorski's two doubles leading the attack, the winners pushed across four runs in the 5th.

Cousins (L) and Esplin
Gurniak (W) and Sikorski

(June 2)  Nisei`s Tom Nishi picked a good time for his first hit of the season.  His two-run homer in the 2nd inning gave Nisei a lead it never surrendered in an 11-3 trouncing of the Boilermakers.  The losers made eight errors, leading to nine unearned runs. Elmer Mori crushed a three-run homer in the 3rd for Nisei.  Merv Franks pitched a five-hitter for the win.

Merv Franks (W) and Danny Okano
Walt Brown (L), Ernie Thrower (3), Ron Hoff (6) and Bill Caswell

(June 5)  Pitcher Ron Montgomery's two-run double in the final inning gave Nisei a 6-6 tie with Firefighters Tuesday night. 

Don Smith and Charlie Esplin
Gary McCullough, Ron Montgomery (2) and Danny Okana

(June 11)    Longshoremen moved into a tie with Nisei and CYO atop the Industrial League following their 4-2 win over Nisei Monday night. Winning pitcher Ken Digby helped his cause with a run-scoring single in the 4th to tie the count.  Ron Hemmerling knocked in two runs in the 6th with a single.

Ken Digby (W) and Al Miller
Merv Frankis (L) and Danny Okano

(June 12)   Don Wilson was sharp blanking CYO on three hits as Western Bridge notched a 2-0 win at Powell Grounds.  Rod MacKay allowed just six hits in taking the loss.

Don Wilson (W) and Frank Kozak
Rod MacKay (L) and Bobo Sikorski

(June 13)   Boilermakers whipped Firemen 14-8 in a five-inning affair Wednesday. Barry Arnett began the winners' assault with a three-run homer in the first inning. Jack McMillan added a run-scoring double as the Boilermakers scored eight times.  The Firemen replied with six in their half of the initial frame.

Gary Winbow, Walt Brown (W) and Jack McMillan
Lorne Drummond, Bill Cousins (2) and Charlie Esplin

(June 14)   Western Bridge defeated Nisei 5-3 Thursday. As a result, the Longshoremen took over sole possession of first place.  Down 3-2 going into the bottom of the 7th, the final inning, Westerns rallied for three for the victory. Right fielder Matt Yanchuk opened the rally with his second double of the night. Bill Simpson singled in Yanchuk to tie and Gary Zailo followed with a homer for the win.

Ron Montgomery (L) and Danny Okano
Ron Curby (W) and Bill Taylor

(June 16)   Saturday night, CYO nipped Firemen 5-3 as Jim Butterworth and Rod MacKay combined on a five-hitter. Stan Brooks took the loss.

Jim Butterworth, Rod MacKay (6) and Bobo Sikorski
Stan Brooks and Merv Maxwell

(June 17)   Nick Craig shutout CYO on four hits Sunday afternoon as Longshoremen posted an 8-0 victory before 2,000 fans at Powell Grounds. It was close until the 7th when the Longshoremen scored five times.

Nick Craig (W) and Al Miller
Ernie Gurniak and Bobo Sikorski

(June 17)  Gary McCullough and Seichi Tahara combined on a one-hitter as Nisei downed Boilermakers 5-2 Sunday night.

Al Parks (L) and Jack McMillan
Gary McCullough, Seichi Tahara (6) and Danny Okano

(June 18)   Matt Yanchuk belted a three-run homer in the 2nd inning and it proved to be all Western Bridge needed Monday night in downing the Firemen 4-2. Gary Zailo went the route with a five-hitter for the win.

Lorne Fuller, Don Smith (2) and Merv Maxwell
Gary Zailo (W) and Bill Taylor

(June 23)   CYO scored a pair in the first inning and coasted to a 6-1 victory Saturday.  Ernie Gurniak held Nisei to three hits in posting the win.

Ernie Gurniak (W) and Maury Mulhern
Seichi Tahara (L) and Danny Okano

(June 24)  Longshoremen took a pair from the Firemen, 7-6 and 8-3, to move into second place in the Industrial League standings. They scored in the bottom of the 10th to take the opener, and built a 7-0 lead after three innings in the night game to cruise to their second win of the day. Nick Craig went all the way to register the pitching win in the first game. Walt Shamro tossed a four-hitter in taking the nightcap.

Don Smith and Dick Phipps, Charlie Esplin (6)
Nick Craig (W) and Al Miller

Walt Shamro (W) and Al Miller
Bill Cousins (L) and Dick Phipps

(June 27)   Rod MacKay, former hurler for the Vancouver Capilanos of the Western International League, fired a two-hitter Wednesday to lead CYO to a 6-1 decision over Western Bridge. MacKay, who fanned five and walked none, evened his record at 4-4.

Rod MacKay (W) and Bobo Sikorski, Maury Mulhern
Gary Zailo (L) and Bill Taylor

(June 28)   Nick Craig held Boilermakers to two hits as Longshoremen posted a 2-0 victory Thursday night. Craig fanned six and walked two in leading his mates to their 11th win in 17 starts.  Al Parks allowed just three hits in taking the loss. Both runs came home on walks.

Al Parks (L) and Jim McMillan
Nick Craig (W) and Al Miller

(June 29)    Bill Taylor slugged a three-run homer in the 5th inning to lead Western Bridge to a 9-3 decision over Nisei.  Gary Zailo and Jack Hatch were aboard on walks before Taylor's blast.  Third sacker Bill Simpson had a two-run single in the 3rd.  Don Wilson held the Nisei to three hits in hurling the win. 

Don Wilson (W) and Taylor
Gary McCullough (L) and Oikawa

(July 31)  Ron Curby fired a three-hitter for his 8th win of the season as Westerns downed Firemen 4-1. A two-run homer by shortstop Leon Brandolini sealed the deal in the 6th inning.  Pitcher Lorne Drummond drove in the only run for the Fireman with a double in the 5th inning.

Drummond (L) and Esplin
Curby (W) and Taylor

(August 3)  Ron Hemmerling's two-run double in the third was all the Longshoremen needed in a 5-0 win over Nisei. Ken Digby fired the shutout, allowing but three hits.

Franks (L) and Nishi
Digby (W) and Miller, Adams (7)

(August 6)  Westerns downed Boilermakers 8-2 Monday night. Ron Curby went all the way for the win.

Curby (W) and Bill Taylor
Al Parks (L) and Ken Rose

(August 8)   Longshoremen moved into a first place tie with Western Bridge Wednesday night as they stopped Nisei 9-5 at Powell Grounds. Nick Craig and Ken Digby teamed up for the mound work for the win.  Digby worked three innings allowing no hits and retiring nine of the ten batters he faced.

Craig, Digby (3) and Jackie Marsh, Paul Adams (3)
Gary McCullough and Gordy Nishi

(August 9)   Pitcher Merv Franks crushed a grand slam homer in the first inning to send Nisei on the way to an 11-1 trouncing of CYO in a sudden-death playoff to determine third place in the Industrial League standings. Centre fielder Elmer Mori added a two-run homer in the sixth. Franks hurled a five-hitter in going the distance.

Franks and Inouye
Alton, Addison (4), MacKay (6) and Keeley

(August 10)  Westerns and Longshoremen failed to settle first place Friday night as they battled to a 3-3 tie in the final game of the regular schedule. The game was called after six innings because of darkness. The teams will meet in a sudden-death playoff tonight to break the deadlock. Longshoremen scored in the last of the 6th to fight back from a 3-2 deficit.  Dave Skelnick singled in Ken Mitchell with the tying marker.

Wilson, Curby (3) and Taylor
Forsythe, Craig (2) and Ross

(August 13)    Longshoremen edged Western Bridge 2-1 Monday in a sudden-death playoff to determine first place in the Industrial League.  Nick Craig and Ron Curby tangled in the mound duel, each throwing a three-hitter. Curby fanned nine and walked two but Craig with four strikeouts and one walk, picked up the win.

Curby (L) and Bill Taylor
Craig (W) and Al Miller

Playoffs :

(August 14)   Lyle Levy pounded a game-winning homer in the 7th inning as CYO nipped Longshoremen 2-1 in the opening game of a best-of-five semi-final series.  Rod MacKay fired a two-hitter for the win.  Ken Digby allowed just three hits in taking the loss.

MacKay (W) and Keeley
Digby (L) and Miller

(August 16)   Home runs by Webb and Al Miller gave Longshoremen a 2-0 win over CYO Thursday to even the semi-final series at a game apiece. Nick Craig fired a two-hitter to register the win. 

Craig (W) and Miller
Gurniak (L) and Keeley

(August 19)   Pitcher Ron Montgomery, named league MVP in a pre-game ceremony, led Nisei to 5-1 and 7-6 victories over Westerns in their semi-final series at Powell Grounds.  In other regular season awards, Westerns Ron Curby was named best pitcher with a 9-1 record and Westerns Frank Kozak the top hitter with a .427 average. Montgomery fired a two-hitter in the first game and relieved in the second to stop a Westerns rally. Frank Kika belted a homer for Nisei in the first game.

Montgomery (W) and Oikawa
Wilson (L), Curby (7) and Taylor

Drummond (W), Montgomery (5) and G. Oikawa, D. Oikawa (5)
Zailo (L), Curby (2) and Kozak

(August 20)  Jack Alton sparked CYO to a 7-2 win over Longshoremen to advance to the league final. CYO won the best-of-five series three games to one.  Alton clubbed a three-run triple in the 4th inning.  Ernie Gurniak hurled the victory allowing just four hits.

Ken Digby (L), Nick Craig (3), Ron Hemmerling (4) and Al Miller
Gurniak (W) and George Keeley

(August 21)   Western Bridge downed Nisei 7-2 Tuesday to even their semi-final series at two games apiece. Frank Kozak belted a homer to led the Westerns attack. Don Wilson gave up seven hits for the win.

Wilson (W) and Taylor
McCullough (L), Drummond (4) and Okano

(August 22)   Bill Taylor drove in five runs Wednesday night to pace Western Bridge to a 9-3 win over Nisei and victory in their semi-final series. Bridge will meet CYO in the league final with the first game tonight. Taylor started with a two-run double in the 2nd.  He added a two-run single in the 4th and later a sacrifice fly. Losing pitcher Ken Homma had a home run for Nisei.

Homma (L), Drummond (2) and Oikawa
Zailo, Wilson (3) and Taylor

(August 23)  CYO took the opening game of the Industrial League's best-of-seven final downing Western Bridge 2-0 Thursday night. Rod MacKay, 8-8 during the regular season, gave up just four hits in hurling the shutout. Lyle Levy's two-run double down the left field line opened the scoring in the first inning. Leo Mulhern knocked in Gord Addison with the third run with a single in the 4th.

MacKay (W) and Keeley
Gary Zailo, Ron Curby (4) and Kozak

(August 25)   CYO and Westerns battled to a 3-3 draw Saturday night in a game called after five innings because of darkness.

Don Wilson and Bill Taylor
Ernie Gurniak and George Keeley

(August 26)   CYO crushed Western Bridge 10-1 Sunday to moved into a 2-0 lead in their final series. Ed Wild and Rod MacKay combined to held the Westerns to three hits.

Wild, Rod MacKay (4) and Keeley
Gary Zailo, Bill Sibson (5) and Bill Taylor

(August 27)   CYO dumped Western Bridge 3-0 to move to within a game of the league title. CYO leads the final set three games to none with one tied. Errors in the first and fifth led to two CYO runs with Jack Alton and Glen Stover getting the gift runs. Catcher George Keeley scored on a single by first sacker Harvey Craig in the third. Rod MacKay held the Westerns to four hits in hurling the shutout.

Don Wilson (L), Chick Venturato (6) and Bill Taylor
MacKay (W) and Keeley

(August 28)   Western Bridge clobbered CYO 8-1 Tuesday to stave off elimination in the Industrial League final series. Westerns scored three in the first inning and coasted to the win behind five-hit pitching by Chick Venturato.

Ernie Gurniak (L) and George Keeley
Chick Venturato (W) and Taylor

(August 29)   Western Bridge exploded for 11 runs in the top of the first inning en route to a 12-2 shellacking of CYO for their second win in the final series. Westerns had just seven hits but took advantage of six CYO errors.

Curby, Zailo (2) and Kozak
xxx, Gednish (1), Addison (4) and Keeley


(May 12)   The Northwest International Semi-Pro Baseball League opens Sunday at Central Park with Vancouver White Spots up against South Burnaby Athletics.  Games are scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday nights and Sunday afternoons.  Other teams in the league are Seattle, Tacoma, Bellingham, Deming and Victoria.

(May 13)  South Burnaby shaded White Spots 2-1 in the season opener of the Northwest Semi-Pro Baseball League Sunday.  Bill Kinder's first inning double drove in Jim Kelly and Gary Sinclair with the South Burnaby runs.

Norm Allen, Alee Roth (5) and Sparrow, Ivan Eriksson (5)
John Rook (W) and Ivan Spees

(June 12)   Bob Roberts hurled a three-hit shutout for Bellingham as the Bells dumped South Burnaby A's 6-0 in Northwest International Semi-Pro action at Central Park Tuesday.  Roberts fanned nine and walked a pair.  Ray Minice led a 14-hit attack with a fourth-inning homer.

Bob Roberts (W) and Art Kowhiess
Johnny Ruck (L) and Ivan Spees

(June 17)   Tacoma and South Burnaby battled to a 2-2 draw.

Walski, Brady (6) and Grant
K. Spees and I. Spees

(June 17)   Tacoma scored early and often Sunday in trouncing White Spots 15-2 behind a 16-hit attack. The visitors scored four in the first inning, added four more in the second and had a five-run outburst in the 6th.  They had single runs in the 3rd and 7th. 

Krittsonis, Bell (5) and Dodger
McLennan, Morris (4), Allen (5) and Sparrow, Eriksson (2)

(June 23)   Vancouver White Spots and Victoria split a twin-bill.  The White Spots crushed the Islanders 15-5 in the first game. McLennan allowed just one run until the 8th in pitching the distance for the win. 

McLennan (W) and Eriksson, Sparrow (8)
Garner (L), Beck (8) and Harford

Victoria rebounded to take the second game 4-1 with an 11-hit attack.  Bill Prior fired a four-hitter for the winners. Curby was the loser.

Curby (L) and Sparrow
Prior (W) and Harford

(June 24)   Walt Clough scattered five hits, all singles, as Seattle topped Burnaby A's 6-1 Sunday.

Clough (W) and Anderson
Ruck (L), Barton (6) and I. Spees

(June 29)   Bill Prior provided both the pitching and the hitting as Victoria edged White Spots 2-0 to grab third place in the Northwest International Semi-Pro League. Prior hurled a two-hitter and fanned six in his mound duties. At the plate, he provided all the offense needed with a homer in the second inning.  Kim Elliott was impressive with a three-hitter for the White Spots.  He struck out eight and walked two.

Bill Prior (W) and Jack Shields
Kim Elliott (L) and Ed Sparrow