1965 Alberta Game Reports     


Four of the five entries from the inaugural campaign reappeared on the scene for the second season of this circuit, the lone exception being the Fort Saskatchewan team.

Army and Navy Cardinals
Blue Willow Angels
Safeway Seals
Weiller-Williams Colts

(May 21)  Looking in mid-season form and taking full advantage of a pair of three-run outbursts, the defending-champion Blue Willow Angels opened the 1965 Edmonton Metropolitan Baseball League season by defeathering the Army and Navy Cardinals 7 to 1 at Renfrew Park. The Cherubs started things off early when Arnie Enger scored a first-inning tally after tripling. They added three more in the third and put the issue beyond doubt with another trio in the seventh. The Cards outhit the Restaurateurs but were unable to start anything resembling a rally until the verdict was out of reach. The winning pitcher was Don Stewart. Enger led the Halos with the stick, adding a brace of singles to his early three-bagger. George Kjenner and losing twirler Gord Labossiere managed a brace of bingles each for the Redbirds.

(May 26)  Staked to a two-run lead when he entered the game in the sixth inning, reliever Bob Schultz slammed the door on the Safeway Seals as the Blue Willow Angels captured their second win of the season by doubling the Grocers 4 to 2 at Renfrew Park. Schultz retired 12 consecutive Seals, including five via the strikeout route, in four perfect innings on the knoll after taking over from Angel starter Al Zilinski. Starter Bill Chahley of the vanquished nine was nicked for just four hits before he was lifted for Bob Salahub in the seventh. Overall, the Cherubs had a 5 to 2 margin in base hits as the pitchers reigned supreme in this tilt.

Chahley (L), B. Salahub (7) and Harry Hodgson
Zilinski, Schultz (W) (6) and Tanner

(May 28)  After having their previous opening-game rained out, the Weiller-Williams Colts finally made their first Metro Baseball League appearance of the campaign and it was a winning one as they edged the Safeway Seals 5 to 4. The Colts had to withstand a late Safeway rally and a flawless relief performance by Seals’ pitcher Ken Ewasiuk to pull out the victory. Ewasiuk fanned seven of the ten batters he faced while his mates were busy narrowing a four-run deficit to just a singleton before the final out was made. LaVerne Holmes went 8-1/3 innings on the knoll for the win while Stu Nicholson, who was yanked in the sixth, was nicked with the loss. Dale Barrow’s triple for the winners was the game’s longest blow. Safeway’s Julie Owchar, with two singles, was the lone batter in the game to amass plural hit totals.

Holmes (W), Wagner (9) and W. Waddle
Nicholson (L), Ewasiuk (6) and Harry Hodgson

(May 29-30)  The hitting-challenged Blue Willow Angels have managed to out-swat their opposition only once this season yet they remain undefeated in four starts after sweeping a pair of Metro League weekend contests at Renfrew Park. The Halos bounced the Weiller-Williams Colts 12 to 7 on Saturday and came back to double the Army & Navy Cardinals 4 to 2 in a Sunday encounter.

In the Saturday clash, the Cafemen broke a 6 – 6 deadlock with a ninth-inning, six-run splurge on just three hits. Colt pitchers aided the cause by handing out three successive free passes. A two-run double by outfielder Andy Skujins was the most impactful blow during the rally. Harvey Popik grabbed the mound decision over Dave Waddle.

Nielson, Popik (W) (3) and Tanner, Kitt (2)
D. Waddle (L), Hood (8), Wagner (9) and Hamel

Sunday, the Angels had only three hits in the seven-inning, rain-abbreviated game. Taking advantage of two sixth-inning errors by the Cards, they managed to score four runs on just two hits in victimizing losing heaver Dale Turner. A & N first sacker Gary Chapman had the longest clout of the contest, a second-inning three-bagger.

Schultz, Zilinski (W) (2) and Tanner
Michaud, Turner (L) (7) and Kulka

(June 1)  In a clash between the two winless Metro League clubs, the Safeway Seals kept their record in tact, allowing six unearned runs in falling 6 to 2 to the Army & Navy Cardinals at Renfrew Park. Both nines ripped the apple for six safeties. The Safeway Squad gave an indication of what kind of an evening it was going to be when Dave McAra failed to touch third base while heading for home from the keystone sack after teammate Dennis Nault had singled in the opening stanza. Winning slabster Gord Labossiere fanned five and walked six while losing heaver Bill Chahley issued ten free passes and whiffed nine. Middle pasture flychasers George Kjenner of the Redbirds and the Seals’ Bill Mudie both drilled a pair of singles. George Stickle and Dave Staples both hit two-baggers for the Army & Navy aggregation.

Chahley (L) and Harry Hodgson
Labossiere (W) and Kulka, Jost (7)

(June 2)  The Blue Willow Angels recorded their fifth straight victory, edging the Weiller-Williams Colts 4 to 3 at Renfrew Park. 23-year old Don Stewart handled the pitching chores for the Halos while 38-year old shortstop Rollie Miles provided much of the batting punch. Stewart had a shutout going until the eighth episode when the Colts scored all three of their counters. He also drove in a run and touched home with what turned out to be the winning run on a sixth-inning single by Miles. The veteran Miles managed two of the six Angel hits including the one that delivered Stewart with the fourth tally for the Cherubs. Colt starting tosser Marv Chupka was charged with the loss, giving way to Dave Waddle in the sixth stanza.

Chupka (L), D. Waddle (6) and Bradshaw
Stewart (W) and Tanner

(June 4)  A 6 to 2 victory over the Army & Navy Cardinals lifted the Weiller-Willow Colts into second place in the Metro League standings, six points behind the front-running Blue Willow Angels. The brother battery of Dave and Hugh Waddle started the Northsiders on their way to a four-run, four-hit seventh inning which broke a 2 – 2 deadlock. Backstop Hugh started the outburst with a double and slabster Dave singled to drive in his brother with a run that turned out to be the winner. Both teams managed ten hits as the seventh-spasm outburst by the W-W’s provided the only noticeable difference between the two squads. Winning hurler Dave Waddle took over from Bob Hood in the fifth frame and blanked the Cards the remainder of the way. The losing heaver was Ken Pollard who was driven to the showers in the seventh. Ron Watamaniuk drove in the first two Colt counters with a second-stanza single while teammate Gene Hamel singled twice, driving in a brace of tallies. Pollard and outfielder George Kjenner both claimed a pair of one-baggers for the losers.

Pollard (L), Turner (7) and Kulka
Hood, D. Waddle (W) (5) and H. Waddle

(June 6)  Rollie Miles’ two-run homer in the seventh stanza broke a 3 – 3 tie and lifted the front-running Blue Willow Angels to their six successive victory, a 5 to 3 conquest of the winless Safeway Seals. Southpaw Gene Romaniuk, one of three chuckers used by the Cherubs, was credited with the victory. The trio of Safeway tallies were charged to Dave Dinwoodie who was touched for a three-run inside-the-park home run by flychaser Russ Spears. Ken Ewasiuk, raked for 11 hits, went the distance for the cellar-dwelling Seals. Herb Sewers sparked the Blue Willow offense with two singles and a double. Lyle Graham followed with three singles. Ewasiuk and hot corner guardian Dennis Nault both singled twice for the Grocers.
Schultz, Dinwoodie (3), Romaniuk (W) (3), Nielsen (8) and Tanner
Ewasiuk (L) and Harry Hodgson

(June 8)  Gord Labossiere propelled the Army & Navy Cardinals to a convincing 7 to 2 victory over the Blue Willow Angels, handing the Halos their first setback of the young season. Labossiere went the route on the hill, setting a season high of 13 strikeouts, allowing seven hits and walking two. On top of that, he blasted a bases-loaded triple in the second spasm and came right back in the fourth frame to belt a two-run homer. Losing twirler Al Hamilton lasted just three innings before getting the hook.  The pair of Angel runs came in the sixth stanza when infielder Gerry Powlik scrambled his way around the sacks for an inside-the-park homer with Herb Sewers aboard.

Labossiere (W) and Jost
Hamilton (L), Zilinski (4), Schultz (6), Nielsen (7) and Tanner

(June 9)  The Weiller-Williams Colts outlasted the winless Safeway Seals 13 to 10 in an error-filled, long-drawn out joust at Renfrew Park. Eighth-inning reliever Marv Chupka, one of three Colt pitchers, was credited with the victory. Stu Nicholson, who came to the aid of Safeway starter Randy Salahub in the fifth inning, was fingered with the loss. Third sacker Bill Lupul was the best of the W-W batters, tapping out three singles, scoring three times and driving in another brace of counters. Teammate Hugh Waddle chipped in with a pair of one-base raps.

R. Salahub, Nicholson (L) (5), Fitzgerald (5) and Harry Hodgson
Wagner, D. Waddle (7), Chupka (W) (8) and H. Waddle 

(June 11)  Serving notice that they aren’t going to be patsies all season, the Safeway Seals finally broke into the win column by taking down the Army & Navy Cardinals 6 to 1. Winning pitcher Bill Chahley limited the Cards to seven hits in going the route. The only run he gave up was unearned following a ninth-inning error. Merv Currie, who was pulled from the bump in the sixth stanza, suffered the loss. The Seals managed just five hits off Currie and reliever Gord Labossiere.

(June 13)  The Weiller-Williams Colts made it two in a row over the supposed Metro Baseball League powerhouse Blue Willow Angels by taking a one-sided 11 to 5 decision at Renfrew Park. The Northsiders plated eight runs in the sixth inning to put a bow on things. Dave Waddle, in relief of starter LaVerne Holmes, stifled a fifth-inning Halo rally to record the victory. Harvey Popik, the third of seven tossers used by the Cherubs, was tagged with the defeat. All but two Colt batters managed to hit safely, with four of the bingles going for extra bases. Gerry Powlik belted a solo home run for the Blue Willow nine.

Stewart, Dinwoodie (6), Popik (L) (6), Romaniuk (6), Hamilton (7), Nielsen (7), Welsh (9) and Tanner
Holmes, D. Waddle  (W) (5) and W. Waddle

Standings                       W       L        Pts.
Blue Willow Angels              6       2        12
Weiller-Williams Colts          4       2         8
Army & Navy Cardinals           2       4         4
Safeway Seals                   1       5         2

(June 15)  A fine effort by complete-game winner Ray Michaud staked the Army & Navy Cardinals to a 7 to 2 conquest of the Weiller-Williams Colts at Renfrew Park. Michaud limited the Colts to seven hits, all singles. At the plate, he cracked out three safeties and outscored the entire W-W team with a trio of tallies. Wayne Samis aided the victors’ nine-hit cause with a pair of singles while Gord Labossiere contributed a triple and scored two runs. Dale Barrow, with two, singles, paced the Colts offensively. Marv Chupka, relieved by Bob Hood in the seventh frame, took the loss.

Chupka (L), Hood (7) and Symington
Michaud (W) and Kulka

(June 16)  The cellar-dwelling Safeway Seals blew an early three-run lead in dropping an 8 to 4 verdict to the league-leading Blue Willow Angels at Renfrew Park. Dale Schultz, a hard-throwing southpaw who came to the rescue of starter Al Zilinski in the second inning, was credited with the win. In the seven innings that followed, he allowed but three hits and walked four. Bill Chahley, who gave up nine hits, walked for and struck out seven, was the loser. Gerry Powlik picked up a double and single for the Cherubs while Rollie Miles and Andy Skujins singled twice. Bill Mudie of the Seals hit safely three times.

Chahley (L) and Hodgson, Symes (4)
Zilinski, Schultz (W) (2) and Tanner

(June 19)  The Army & Navy Cardinals surprised the front-running Blue Willow Angels by bouncing the league-leaders 6 to 4 at Renfrew Park. The Redbirds, who trailed 4 – 3 at one time, rode the solid relief pitching of Gord Labossiere to victory. Ken Taylor pounded out a double and single for A & N while Rod Gauf stroked a pair of singles. Don Stewart of the Halos was ejected from the game and later suspended for three games by the league moguls.

Dinwoodie (L) and Tanner
Pollard, Labossiere (W) (5) and Jost

(June 20)  The Safeway Seals, doormats in the Metropolitan Baseball League, won their second of the campaign with a devastating 13 to 1 rout of the Weiller-Williams Colts. Ken Ewasiuk went the distance for the Seals, limiting the Colts to five hits, three off the bat of Ron Watamaniuk. Dave Waddle, the first of four Colt hurlers, suffered the loss. Third baseman Henry Hodgson and outfielder Ross Speers led the 16-hit Safeway attack with three singles each.

D. Waddle (L), Wagner (3), Holmes (8), Chupka (8) and W. Waddle
Ewasiuk (W) and xxx

(June 22)  Right-hander Dale Turner limited the Safeway Seals to just four hits in pitching the Army & Navy Cardinals to a 12 to 2 thumping of the Grocers. All the hits he surrendered came after six scoreless innings. He fanned 11, walked four and allowed but one extra-base hit, a double by Wayne Symes in the eighth. The Cards, now in second place, battered losing chucker Dennis Fitzgerald and reliever Stu Nicholson for 14 hits. Turner was one of five Redbirds to hit safely twice. The others were Rod Gauf, George Stickle, Stan Kulka and Lyle Kortzman.

Fitzgerald (L), Nicholson (5) and Symes
Turner (W) and Jost

(June 23)  Al Hamilton found the Weiller-Williams Colts to his liking at Renfrew Park, but only for eight innings. The big left-hander limited the Colts to two hits before the ninth, then he walked two consecutive batters, was pulled from the mound, and was tagged with the defeat while sitting in the dugout. The Colts scored three runs in the ninth to topple the front-running Blue Willow Angels 4 to 2 and pull into a second-place tie with the Army & Navy Cardinals, While Hamilton was limiting the Northsiders to just a pair of safeties, his counterpart, Marv Chupka, was holding the Halos to five, He had a no-hitter going until Doug Bienert singled with two out in the sixth. Al Symington had the crucial base rap for the W-W’s, stroking a pinch-hit single off Hamilton’s successor, Sandy Nielson, to bring in the tying and winning runs. Infielder Gerry Powlik had two of the Blue Willow hits, both singles.

Chupka (W) and W. Waddle
Hamilton (L), Nielsen (9) and Tanner

(June 29)  The Army & Navy Cardinals pulled to within two points of the Blue Willow Angels with a 4 to 1 conquest of the front-runners at Renfrew Park. The Halos did manage to out-hit the Redbirds 13 – 10 but they also stranded 15 runners on base, twice leaving the sacks bulging. Ex-Angel Harvey Popik worked 8-2/3 innings on the rubber for the victory, ceding the final out to reliever Gord Labossiere. Sandy Nielsen, the first of four Blue Willow hurlers, was clipped with the loss after working into the fourth frame. Flychaser Rod Gauf sparked the Cards with the baton, claiming three safeties in four at bats. Labossiere, Ken Taylor and George Kjenner all chipped in with a pair of singles. Outfielder Andy Skujins pounded out a double and two singles for the Restaurateurs while Herb Sewers collected three singles and Rollie Miles a brace of one-base hits.

Popik (W), Labossiere (9) and Kulka
Nielsen (L), Schultz (4), Welsh (7), Dinwoodie (9) and Tanner

(June 30)  Scoring twice in the top-of-the-tenth inning, the Safeway Seals held off a comeback attempt by the Weiller-Williams diamond troopers to nose out the Colts 5 to 4 at Renfrew Park. A key double by third baseman Henry Hodgson and a follow-up one-bagger by outfielder Bill Miller produced the deuce in the overtime stanza that broke a 3 – 3 tie that gave the Northsiders into a temporary 5 to 3 lead. Safeway heaver Ken Ewasiuk, who entered the fray as a ninth-inning reliever for Seals’ starting pitcher Harry Hodgson, then surrendered a singleton in the Colts’ portion of the tenth but hung on for the narrow win. In addition to his critical two-bagger, infielder Hodgson also punched out three other base raps.

Harry Hodgson, Ewasiuk (W) (9) and Symes
Hood (L), Wagner (10) and Symington

(July 1)  The suddenly-hot Safeway Seals reeled of a pair of victories over the Weiller-Williams Colts in Canada Day doubleheader action at the Renfrew ballyard, their second and third victories over the W-W’s in just 24 hours. The scores were 4 to 2 and 6 to 4.

The Safeway squad overcame a 2 – 1 deficit and scored three times in the sixth inning of the opener to forge in front for the duration of the clash. Key hits in that outburst came from Wayne Symes, Bill Miller, Harry Hodgson and Peter Tchir. Winning tosser Dennis Fitzgerald limited the Colts to six hits while his mates collected a dozen base knocks off three Weiller-Williams hurlers.

Holmes (L), Wagner (7), Van Loo (9) and Symington
Fitzgerald (W) and Symes

The clubs were deadlocked 3 – 3 entering the ninth inning of the finale. Then Tchir banged a single, Symes cracked a triple and Henry Hodgson followed with a double to give the Seals a two-run edge. The Colts could only manage a run by Dick Staples in their half of the canto to fall a lone tally short. Hodgson had an earlier safety to finish with a brace of bingles for the winners.

Over the course of the two-game set, Tchir hit safely five times while the Colts’ Jim Bradshaw was almost a one-man show, connecting for five of the ten safeties that the Northsiders attained in the double defeat.

Ewasiuk (W), Kostenuk (6) and Harry Hodgson
Holmes (L), Van Loo (3), Gray (9) and Symington

Standings                       W       L        Pts.
Blue Willow Angels              7       5        14
Army & Navy Cardinals           6       4        12
Weiller-Williams Colts          5       7        10
Safeway Seals                   5       7        10

(July 4)  Shrugging off the sting at the hands of three recent defeats at the hands of the Safeway Seals, the Weiller-Williams Colts bounced back to defeat the league-leading Blue Willow Angels 4 to 3. A two-hitter by winning heaver Dave Waddle plus four clutch singles in the ninth chapter, which netted a triad of tallies, lifted the Colts to victory. The late rally, which saw the Northsiders roar back from a 3 – 1 deficit, was climaxed with two-run single by Wally Waddle which tied the score and a single by third baseman Ken Townsend which drove in the winner. Don Stewart, who was relieved in the ninth by Dale Schultz, was charged with the loss.

Stewart (L), Schultz (9) and Tanner
D. Waddle (W) and W. Waddle

(July 6)  Harvey Popik pitched the first Metro Baseball League shutout of the season as the Army & Navy Cardinals blanked the Weiller-Williams Colts 2 to 0 to move into second place in the standings, two points back of the front-running Blue Willow Angels. Popik surrendered a single to Jim Bradshaw in the third inning and was touched for a triple by Dale Barrow in the sixth. He walked six and struck out four. Neither starter and loser Marv Chupka nor Wayne Wagner, who took over mound duties in the fourth frame, had poor outings, In fact, Chupka gave up just two hits while Wagner yielded but one, a double by George Stickle. Stickle scored both Cardinal runs, once after walking in the third and the second on his fifth-frame two-bagger.

Chupka (L), Wagner (4) and W. Waddle
Popik (W) and Kulka

(July 8)  A 9 to 8 win over the Blue Willow Angels vaulted the Safeway Seals into a third-place tie with the Weiller-Williams Colts in the Metropolitan League standings in a tight race which finds them just four points behind the pace-setting Cherubs. It was a long and arduous game, replete with 11 errors, in which the Grocers had a hefty 12 to 5 advantage in base knocks. The Seals scored with regularity and went into the bottom-of-the-ninth holding a healthy 9 to 4 lead, but almost gave the final result away by allowing the Halos to come up with a four-spot on one hit, three walks and two errors. Neither starting chucker, winner Ken Ewasiuk and losing heaver Al Zilinski, was around at the end. Safeway’s Dennis Nault cracked out a pair of singles and drove in two runs.

Ewasiuk (W), Harry Hodgson (9) and Symes
Zilinski (L), Schultz (7) and Tanner

(July 9)  The Weiller-Williams Colts and the Safeway Seals worked 11 long innings at Renfrew Park before the Colts finally prevailed 8 to 6 to move into a tie for second place with the Army & Navy Cardinals. Dale Barrow’s timely single in the top-half of the second session of overtime provided the difference, driving in playing-manager Wally Waddle and Julie Owchar with the lead and insurance counters. It came off losing pitcher Dennis Fitzgerald who took over mound chores for the Seals in the second spasm. The victory went to the Colts’ Marv Chupka who ascended the hillock in the fifth. Barrow’s game-winning single wasn’t his first of the evening. He went six-for-six at the plate, cuffing five one-base hits and a double. Owchar collected three safeties. Terry Olsen was the best of the Seals with a pair of singles.

Holmes, Chupka (W) (5) and W. Waddle
Chahley, Fitzgerald (L) (2) and Mudie

(July 12)  The Blue Willow Angels turned a big four-run fifth inning into an 8 to 5 victory over the Safeway Seals to reaffirm their first-place standing and move them four points in front of the pack. It was an offensively-charged tilt with the Seals holding a 12 to 11 margin in safe swats. Dale Schultz went the distance for Blue Willow, fanning eight while handing out five free passes. Starting tosser Ken Ewasiuk of the Safeway squad, kayoed from the bump in the fifth, was stung with the defeat. Ed Tanner sparked the Angel offense with a pair of singles and a run-scoring triple. Clubmates Herb Sewers and Lyle Graham added two hits each. Leadoff hitter Ken Lederer was the best of the Seals with the baton, knocking out three singles and scoring two runs.

Schultz (W) and Tanner
Ewasiuk (L), Harry Hodgins (5) and Symes 

(July 13)  The Army & Navy Cardinals moved to within two points of the top rung on the Metro Baseball League ladder when they blanked the last-place Safeway Seals 7 to 0 at Renfrew Park. Cardinal hurler Ray Michaud was the evening’s bright star, tossing a sparkling three-hitter for the complete-game victory. The big inning for the winners was the sixth when they pushed across five tallies. Michaud and George Kjenner led the Redbirds’ nine-hit barrage with two safeties apiece. The Grocers aided the A & N cause by committing five errors.

Fitzgerald (L), Kostenuk (3) and Symes
Michaud (W) and Kulka

(July 14)  For the fourth time this Metro League season, the Blue Willow Angels experienced the ninth-inning doldrums, leading to a loss. The Weiller-Williams Colts administered the latest setback to the front-runners, nosing out the Restaurateurs 3 to 2. Jim Bradshaw’s leadoff triple, followed by Julie Owchar’s single, provided the winning run. Winning slabster Dave Waddle gave up eight hits, fanned six and walked to in a complete-game effort. Reliever Dave Dinwoodie was tarred with the defeat. Bradshaw had a single to go along with his three-bagger. Ed Tanner and Don Stewart both singled twice for the Halos.

D. Waddle (W) and W. Waddle
Hamilton, Dinwoodie (L) (7) and Tanner

(July 15)  Weiller-Williams Colts  7      Army & Navy Cardinals  4

(July 16)  Safeway Seals  11      Blue Willow Angels  10

(July 20)  The slumping Blue Willow Angels continued to slide in the wrong direction, dropping a 6 to 2 decision to the surging Army & Navy Cardinals. Portsider Gord Labossiere stymied any Angel hopes in recording the victory. Backed by the eight-hit support of his mates, Labossiere went the nine-inning route, striking out eight and walking just two. Of the 11 hits he yielded, most were scattered and only two were timely.

Labossiere (W) and Kulka
Welsh (L), Nielsen (4), Dinwoodie (7) and Erikson

Standings                       W       L        Pts.
Army & Navy Cardinals           9       6        18
Weiller-Willow Colts            9       8        18
Blue Willow Angels              9      10        18
Safeway Seals                   7      10        14

(July 21)  The Weiller-Williams Colts took over sole possession of first place in the Metropolitan Baseball League when they scraped out a 3 to 2 win over the Safeway Seals. It took a ninth-inning triple by playing-manager Wally Waddle and a follow-up single by Julie Owchar to pull off the victory which gives the Northsiders a two-point edge on both the Army & Navy Cardinals and Blue Willow Angels. Dave Waddle scattered six hits to secure the pitching victory and also drove in two of he the winners’ three runs. Eighth-inning reliever Harry Hodgson of the Seals was nicked with the loss. Recently acquired Ed Tanner, disposed earlier by the Blue Willow club following an internal feud, made a token appearance for the Colts in the late stages of this encounter.

D. Waddle (W) and W. Waddle
Chahley, Harry Hodgson (L) (8) and Mudie

(July 22)  The Army & Navy Cardinals moved into a tie atop the Metro League circuit by bombing the Safeway Seals 10 to 3 at Renfrew Park. The Redbirds wasted little time in getting to losing hurler Dennis Fitzgerald, tallying single counters in each of their first two turns at bat and adding three more in the third. A five-spot in the top-of-the-ninth put the game on ice. The winning tosser was Harvey Popik who was nicked for six safeties. Fitzgerald and ninth-inning reliever Bill Miller were combed for 11 base knocks.

Popik (W) and Kulka
Fitzgerald (L), Miller (9) and Harry Hodgson

(July 29)  It took seven long days but the Metro Baseball League finally beat the wet weather and resumed play. A 15 to 5 thumping of the tail-end Safeway Seals pushed the Weiller-Williams Colts into the penthouse position in the circuit, a mere two points ahead of the Army & Navy Cardinals. The Colts banged out 19 safeties while the Grocers attained nine. Bob Hood garnered the pitching win over Dennis Fitzgerald.

Hood (W), Wagner (8) and Tanner
Fitzgerald (L), Ewasiuk (6), Harry Hodgson (7) and Mudie 

(July 30)  The Army & Navy Cardinals waited but one day to pull back into a tie for first place in the Metropolitan Baseball League. Usurped from the lead 24 hours previous by the Weiller-Williams Colts, the Redbirds came out flying and unleashed a 23-hit attack in crushing the Blue Willow Angels 13 to 4. Stu Nicholson went the distance on the bump for the victory, stopping the Halos on five hits.

(August 3)  A come-from-behind 8 to 4 win over the Safeway Seals boosted the Army & Navy Cardinals two points ahead of the Weiller-Williams Colts in their late-season battle for top spot in the Metro Baseball League. The last-place Seals, as usual, couldn’t stand prosperity. This time they took a 3 – 0 lead by the top-of-the-third inning before folding. The Cardinals unleashed a four-hit, four-run attack in the bottom-of-the third and never looked back. Ken Pollard, who gave way to relief ace Gord Labossiere in the fifth inning, was credited with the win. The Safeway loss officially eliminated their pennant hopes. Starter Bill Mudie was saddled with the loss.

Mudie (L), Ewasiuk (3), Harry Hodgson (5) and Harry Hodgson, Mudie (5)
Pollard (W), Labossiere (5) and Jost 

(August 4)  The Weiller-Williams Colts moved back into a first-place deadlock with the Army & Navy Cardinals by blanking the Blue Willow Angels 7 to 0 at Renfrew Park. Pitcher Wayne Wagner, relying mainly on a curveball, was instrumental in the victory, limiting the one-time league-leaders to seven scattered hits, all singles. He set the Cherubs down in order five innings. Wagner’s teammates erupted for 21 base hits, including a five-for-five performance by second baseman Julie Owchar. Ron Watamaniuk almost made it perfect, collecting four hits, one of which was a double, in five trips. Losing twirler Ed Welsh was the victim of 18 hits before being yanked in favor of lefty Al Hamilton in the eighth inning.

Welsh (L), Hamilton (8) and Erikson
Wagner (W) and Tanner

(August 6)  The Weiller-Williams Colts broke a long-standing first-place deadlock with the Army & Navy Cardinals by nipping the Redbirds 2 to 1 at Renfrew Park. Dave Waddle went the distance on the mound for the winners, allowing but five hits. The Colt tosser struck out nine and twice fanned the side. The Cards’ mound ace, Gord Labossiere, wasn’t enough to stop the Colts. Labossiere gave up seven hits, including a triple and single to Jim Bradshaw. Waddle’s second inning single allowed Al Symington to cross the plate with what turned out to be the winning run.

Labossiere (L) and Jost
D. Waddle (w) and Tanner

(August 10)  Limping down the home stretch of the schedule, the fast-fading Blue Willow Angels were subdued once again, falling  11 to 9 to the red-hot Weiller-Williams Colts. The win for the Northsiders was their eighth in a row and gives them a four-point cushion atop the Metro loop. All but two Colt batters hit safely on the 15-hit feast offered them by losing twirler Dave Dinwoodie, who was unmercifully left on the hillock by Angel management. The W-W’s lit him up for a five-spot, without relief, in the final canto as the Halos blew a 9 to 6 lead. Dave Waddle hurled the final four frames for the Colts to cop the knoll verdict. Catcher Ed Tanner led his new team with the baton, drilling three singles and a double. Outfielder Andy Skujins powered the vanquished Cherubs with a double, single and four RBI’s.

Chupka, Holmes (6), D. Waddle (W) (6) and Tanner
Dinwoodie (L) and Erickson

(August 11)  The Safeway Seals, one-time masters of the dropped fly and muffed play, are suddenly bidding for the third and final playoff position. The Seals upset the pennant-contending Army & Navy Cardinals 11 to 8 at Renfrew Park to pull to within two points of the Blue Willow Angels, current holders of the last playoff spot. A nine-run eruption in the sixth spasm put the Grocers on the road to victory. Twice, they executed perfect squeeze plays with the bases loaded to wrap up the game. Ken Ewasiuk, the sandwich tosser in a Seal threesome of chuckers, got the win while Harvey Popik suffered the loss. Catcher Wayne Symes blasted a second-inning for the Safeway nine.

Nicholson, Popik (L) (6), Labossiere (6) and Jost
Chahley, Ewasiuk (W) (6), Harry Hodgson (8) and Symes.

(August 12)  Fast running out of time in their bid for the Metro League pennant, the Army & Navy Cardinals suffered a 13 to 4 bombing at the hands of the Blue Willow Angels. Everything came up roses for the Angels after a disastrous first inning in which starter Al Hamilton allowed four runs on one hit, one error and five free passes. The victory for the Cherubs was long overdue. They scored twice in the opening canto, six times in the fifth, a singleton in the seventh and added four more in the ninth. Halo reliever Ed Welsh was outstanding, shutting down the Redbirds on three hits, all singles, and no runs through eight innings. First baseman Jerry Powlik led the 15-hit Blue Willow attack with a triple and two singles. Harvey Popik, the first of three A & N pitchers, suffered the loss.

Hamilton, Welsh (W) (1) and Erickson
Popik (L), Pollard (5), Labossiere (9) and Kulka

(August 15)  The Blue Willow Angles retained their four-point hold on the Metro League’s third and last playoff position by splitting a double-bill with the last-place Safeway Seals. The Cherubs triumphed 9 to 3 in the matinée tilt before bowing 7 to 4 in the second encounter.

The Halos made few mistakes in their opening test. They rapped losing flinger Bill Chahley and reliever Ken Ewasiuk for 11 safeties and broke the game open with a five-spot in the seventh stanza. Dale Schultz, with fifth-inning assistance from Sandy Nielsen, limited the Seals to five hits in recording the victory.

Schultz (W), Nielsen (5) and Erickson
Chahley (L), Ewasiuk (7) and Symes 

Seven walks and three errors by his mates sent Blue Willow’s Al Hamilton down to defeat in the nightcap. Despite limiting the Safeway Squad to just three hits, all singles, Hamilton was in trouble every inning but the sixth. Harry Hodgson, who gave up eight hits, recorded the victory.

Hamilton (L) and Erickson
Harry Hodgson (W) and Symes

(August 17)  The Army & Navy Cardinals, minus all their reserve players, defeated the pace-setting Weiller-Williams Colts 5 to 2 to keep their pennant hopes alive. The plate umpire ejected the whole A & N bench for protests on a called third strike that went against Dale Turner and which ended a three-run uprising in the sixth inning. However, winning pitcher Gord Labossiere and his remaining eight cohorts were strong enough to hold the lead. Labossiere limited the Colts to seven hits and struck out nine. Starting pitcher Dave Waddle of the Northsiders handcuffed the Cards for the initial five frames, yielding but one hit but his inability to find the plate eventually cost him the game. Waddle walked ten batters in the first six spasms, twice loading the bases. His fielding support wasn’t much better, allowing the first three runs to cross the dish unearned. Outfielder George Kjenner blasted two doubles for the victors. Waddle, with a pair of singles, was best with the baton for the Colts.

Labossiere (W) and Kulka
D. Waddle (L), Holmes (8) and Tanner

(August 18)  Despite collecting only three hits, the Blue Willow Angels stopped the league-leading Weiller-Williams Colts 4 to 2 at Renfrew Park. The Colts committed six errors on the way to defeat. Overcoming a 2 – 0 deficit, the Cherubs scored a trey in the seventh, parlaying their three consecutive hits, singles by Don Stewart and Herb Sewers and a double by Ken Townsend, into pay dirt. Dave Dinwoodie, tagged for nine hits, managed to go the distance for the victory. Marv Chupka, who had a no-hitter through six innings, was saddled with the pitching defeat.

Dinwoodie (W) and Erickson
Chupka (L), Murray (7) and W. Waddle

(August 19)  A 9 to 8 conquest of the Safeway Seals in ten innings officially garnered the Blue Willow Angels the last berth in the Metro League playoffs. The Seals outswatted their opponents 14 to 8 but folded in the late-going. The Halos, after falling behind 8 to 6 in the top-of-the-bonus inning, capitalized on two misjudged fly balls and two hits to score three times in their half of overtime in pulling out the victory. Herb Sewers struck the decisive blow, a double which drove in winning heaver Sandy Nielsen and Don Stewart with the tying and winning runs. Complete-game heaver Harry Hodgson was the victim of the hard-luck loss.

Harry Hodgson (L) and Symes, Mudie (9)
Welsh, Nielsen (W) (10) and Erickson

(August 20)  By doubling their closest pursuers, the Army & Navy Cardinals 12 to 6 at Renfrew Park, the Weiller-Williams Colts wrapped up the 1965 Metro Baseball League regular-season pennant. The Colts hammered losing chucker Gord Labossiere and two successors for 16 base raps. Labossiere was tossed to the showers for arguing a called third strike after being tagged with the first six Colt tallies. The Redbirds put a scare into the frisky Colts once, in a four-run seventh frame, but trailed for most of the game. Starting twirler Wayne Wagner notched the pitching win although he was derricked in the seventh spasm. Julie Owchar and Ed Tanner were the mainstays of the W-W offense, each with a brace of two-baggers

Wagner (W), D. Waddle (7), Murray (7) and Tanner
Labossiere (L), Popik (8), Turner (9) and Kulka

Final standings                W     L      Pts.
Weiller-Williams Colts        15     9       30
Army & Navy Cardinals         13    11       26      
Blue Willow Angels            13    13       26     
Safeway Seals                  9    15       18     

SEMI-FINALS  Blue Willow Angels vs Army & Navy Cardinals  (best-of-five series)

(August 24)  The defending-champion Blue Willow Angels, who narrowly clinched a playoff berth this season, clipped the runner-up Army & Navy Cardinals 13 to 6 in the first game of the Metropolitan Baseball League semi-finals at Renfrew Park. The unpredictable Halos, down 5 – 0 after three innings, struck for seven runs on five hits in the fourth frame to take a lead they never relinquished. Gerry Powlik, with a single, and Doug Bienert, with a double, both drilled bases-loaded raps during the uprising. Blue Willow starter Dave Schultz, a six-hit victim during the opening three innings, allowed but one run on three hits over the course of the final six stanzas to record the mound victory. Dale Turner, who gave way to Gord Labossiere in the fifth frame, was the loser.

Schultz (W) and Erickson
Turner (L), Labossiere (5) and Jost, Chaba (6)

(August 31)  Gord Labossiere fired a one-hitter as the Army & Navy Cardinals tamed the Blue Willow Angels in a 1 to 0 thriller at Renfrew Park to square their semi-final series at a game apiece. A fifth-inning single by outfielder Andy Skujins spoiled Labossiere’s bid for a no-hitter. The Redbird slabster walked four, hit one batter and rang up a dozen punchouts, five times downing the Blue Willows in 1-2-3 order. Wayne Samis accounted for the only run of the game, singling home Stan Kulka who had reached base on a free pass. Angels’ starter Dave Dinwoodie went the distance , turning in a creditable seven-hit effort.

(September 5-6)  Pitching strength produced a winner in Metro Baseball semi-final action over the Labor Day long weekend. The Army & Navy Cardinals advanced to a best-of-seven final series against the Weiller-Williams Colts by stopping the Blue Willow Angels in a five-game set. The Cards had to come from a two-games-to-one deficit after the Angels had forged ahead in the series by taking a Sunday game 9 to 6.

Schultz (W), Welsh (8) and Erickson
Labossiere (L) and Jost

The Cherubs answered with 11 to 7 and 7 to 6 Monday victories. Gord Labossiere, voted by rival players as the league’s MVP, proved he deserved it in the final game. The big right-hander, loser of the Sunday tussle, relieved starter Dale Turner in the second stanza, with the Redbirds down 4 – 1, and yielded just two runs in the concluding eight episodes, one of those raps being an eight-inning two-run circuit clout by catcher Gaalen Erickson/Erikson. Harvey Popik had evened the series with a complete-game mound verdict over his former mates in the opening-Monday clash, decisioning Dave Dinwoodie. It just wasn’t Dinwoodie’s day as he was also stung with the setback in the late encounter.

Dinwoodie (L), Welsh (1) and Erickson
Popik (W) and Kulka

Dinwoodie (L) and Erickson
Turner, Labossiere (W) (2) and Kulka

FINALS  Army & Navy Cardinals vs Weiller-Williams Colts  (best-of-seven series)

(September 7)  Indecision and hasty thinking, all bundled up in one wild throw, cost the Army & Navy Cardinals the first game of the Metro League finals. Shortstop Lyle Kortzman’s two-run error, after he hesitated and then threw wild to first base after fielding Julie Owchar’s sixth-inning ground ball, gave the Weiller-Williams Colts a one-game lead following the first game of the best-of-seven series. Dave Waddle and winning reliever Wayne Wagner teamed up to limit the Redbirds to nine hits. Losing chucker Harvey Popik was raked for ten safeties.

(September 10)  Gord Labossiere pitched and batted the Army & Navy Cardinals to a 7 to 6 come-from-behind playoff victory at Renfrew Park which knotted their final series with the Weiller-Williams Colts at a game apiece. Labossiere’s single with two out in the bottom-of-the-ninth inning drove in Lyle Kortzman with the winning run. The big right-hander also went the distance on the hillock, surrendering eight hits. His game-winning hit was his third safety of the game and capped a three-run rally in the final canto. Reliever Larry Murray, who until the fatal ninth chapter had allowed but two hits, absorbed the loss. Shortstop Ron Watamaniuk led the Colt batters with a double and single.

Chupka, Murray (L) (4) and W. Waddle
Labossiere (W) and Kulka

(September 12)  Right handed slabster Harvey Popik limited the Weiller-Williams Colts to three hits, all in the same inning, to lead the Army & Navy Cardinals to a 3 to 1 conquest of the Northsiders in the third game of the Metropolitan League finals. Other than a one-run sixth stanza, a product of the three singles, the Colts were never in the game. Popik retired the side in order seven innings and would have done it once more had it not been for an infield error. Lyle Kortzman of the Cards handled losing tosser Wayne Wagner and two successors by tapping out two singles and a double, walking once and scoring twice.

Popik (W) and Kulka
Wagner (L), Hood (3), Zilinski (8) and W. Waddle

(September 13)  After toiling a very successful nine innings on the mound just 24 hours previous, Harvey Popik was summoned into the fourth game of the Metro Baseball League finals as a second-stanza reliever at Renfrew Park and worked 6-2/3 innings on the knoll in helping the Army & Navy Cardinals take a stranglehold on the Metro League finals by disposing of the pennant-winning Weiller-Williams Colts 13 to 8. The win for the Cards vaulted them into a 3 – 1 lead in the best-of-seven series. After coming to the aid of Redbirds’ starter starter Stu Nicholson in the second spasm, Popik endured on the bump until needing help from Gord Labossiere to shut things down with one down in the ninth. Popik’s sacrifice fly in the seventh chapter drove in Larry Proctor with what turned out to be the winning run. The loss was pinned on Al Zilinski, the second of three W-W heavers.

Hood, Zilinski (L) (3), Chupka (7) and Tanner
Nicholson, Popik (W) (2), Labossiere (9) and Kulka

(September 17)  The Army & Navy Cardinals, second-best in the Metropolitan Baseball League regular-season standings, ended up as 1965 playoff champions by taking a hotly-contested, ten-inning 3 to 1 verdict from the Weiller-Williams Colts to annex the final series in five games. With the score knotted a 1 – 1 in the top-of-the-tenth frame, outfielder Zen Chaba of the Redbirds delivered a single to drive in Lyle Kortzman with the deciding tally. The Cards added an insurance run shortly thereafter before Dale Turner grounded out to end the inning. Hard-throwing Gord Labossiere persevered through some trying moments, firing a seven-hitter while recording 12 strikeouts, to earn the pitching victory. In the bottom portion of the overtime session, the Colts loaded the sacks with none out. Labossiere spotted the next batter three balls and then dug down deep to retire the side on strikeouts. The Colts had forced the bonus stanza when Bob Hood drove in Dale Barrow with a searing single with two out in the bottom-of-the-ninth. Curveball artist Wayne Wagner, a ninth-inning reliever for Larry Murray, was the losing heaver.

Labossiere (W) and Kulka
Murray, Wagner (L) (9) and Tanner


With the departure of Dawson Creek and Fort. St. John and the addition of Falher and Peace River, formerly of the North Peace League, this association of six teams became an all-Alberta circuit in 1965.

Fairview Outlaws
Falher Pirates
Peace River Stampeders

Beaverlodge Royals
Grande Prairie Eskimos
Sexsmith Rainiers          

SEMI-FINALS  Fairview vs Peace River (North) and Sexsmith vs Grande Prairie (South)

(August 17)  The Grande Prairie Eskimos rode into the Wheat Belt Baseball League finals by sidelining the Sexsmith Rainiers 8 to 2 to annex the South Division title in four games. Bill Robinson pitched a five-hitter for the win. Losing chucker Bob Zaichowsky gave up five runs before he was yanked in favor of Gerry Pitman in the fifth. Don Richards sparked the Esks’ offense with four hits, including two triples, in four tries and scored three runs. Gary Nellis, with a single, double and three RBI’s was another standout for the winners. Wayne Lock, with two singles, led the Rainiers.

(August 17)  Overpowering right-hander Jim Fox checked the Peace River Stampeders on three hits and fanned nine as the Fairview Outlaws rolled to a 5 to 1 victory to annex the North Division series in five games. The Bandits had the win in the bag by the third inning when they scored three runs on a couple of hits and sent losing tosser Pete Czuy of the Stamps to the showers. The winners chalked up nine hits off the slants of Czuy and reliever Ken Gall. Pat Friedel and Mel Watchorn not only slammed back-to-back homers for Fairview but they did it on consecutive pitches in the eighth canto.

FINALS  Fairview (North) vs Grande Prairie (South)

(August 20)  The Fairview Outlaws opened the Wheat Belt League finals by convincingly sweeping both ends of a home-and-home two-game set from the Grande Prairie Eskimos. The Outlaws embarrassed an uninspired, fumbling and shorthanded band of Esks 18 to 2 right on their home turf in the afternoon joust. Then, under the lights at Fairview, they upended the visitors 11 to 7.

Fairview pounded the offerings of three Eskimo hurlers at will in the matinée clash. Winning slabster Ken Fox pitched a masterful game and got into trouble only once, in the seventh when the Esks plated both their runs. Grande Prairie starter Bill Robinson took the loss. Mel Watchorn slugged a three-run four-bagger for the victors.
In the night game at Fairview, the two teams battled on even terms for the first four innings before the Law Breakers broke things wide open with an eight-spot in the sixth stanza. Tony Doll, in relief of starter Jim Fox, garnered the knoll win while Jim Johnson, who went the route for the Esks, absorbed the setback. Fairview’s Mel Watchorn and “Buster” Kuntz nailed circuit clouts while Don Richards and Dale Stokke both clubbed two-run dingers for Grande Prairie.

(September 5)  The Fairview Outlaws were awarded the 1965 Wheat Belt Baseball League championship after the Grande Prairie Eskimos failed to failed to field a full complement of players for the third game in the best-of-five final series.


Only Lethbridge, amongst the major southern Alberta municipalities, remained barren of senior-amateur baseball in 1965.


Senior-amateur baseball returned to Calgary during the 1965 season with the addition of the Royals to the Big Four Baseball League. The Calgarians, utilizing the same moniker as the returning Medicine Hat franchise, were joined by the Brooks entry, renamed the Lions, and the Drumheller Miners as the four participants in the second-year loop.

Brooks Lions
Calgary Royals
Drumheller Miners
Medicine Hat Royals

(May 30)  The defending-champion Medicine Hat Royals opened defense of their Big Four Baseball League title by taking a two-game set from the visiting Calgary Royals at Athletic Park. The Gas City version of the Blue Bloods handily captured the matinée match 16 to 4 while the Cow Towners put up a much stiffer fight in the twilight tilt before succumbing 8 to 7.

The Calgarians roared out of the gate with a three-spot in their first turn at bat of the opener but, after that, it was all Medicine Hat. Larry Plante of the Hatters clouted a two-run dinger to reduce the deficit to one and, then, a seven-run fourth inning drove the Stampede City squad for cover and virtually put the game on ice. After a rocky first frame, winning tosser Dennis Churchill settled down and effectively went the route, spreading 11 hits while punching out nine. Reliever Jim Craig was tagged with the loss after stepping in for Calgary starter Wally Cross. Jerry Stockburger punched three singles and scored four times for the winners. Jack Crockett had three singles while Plante had a two-bagger to go along with his round-tripper.

Playing-manager “Zeke” Ziebart’s triple in the sixth spasm of the late fixture drove in Jack Crockett with the deciding tally. Tony Geisinger, who took over for Ziebart on the bump with two out in the opening canto, was the winning chucker while Calgary’s Gary Moffat, in relief of Dave Powell in the fourth frame, was nailed with the loss.

(May 30)  The Drumheller Miners dumped the visiting Brooks Lions twice, by scores of 12 to 6 and 10 to 8, as the Big Four Baseball League season got underway for both clubs.

Roger Pozzo posted the pitching win in the opener, yielding six hits in the eight episodes that he toiled on the hill while Marv Siebel, the first of three Brooks’ chuckers, was charged with the loss. Dennis Miller stroked three base raps for the victors while clubmates Jack Samuels and Doug Compton checked in with a brace each. Bob Trembecky of the Miners had the game’s and the season’s first four-bagger.

The Miners had to fight from behind to cop the late bout and the sweep. Playing-manager Jim Berlando, coming on in relief of Ron Brandenburg in the fifth frame, was the triumphant slabster in this tilt. The loss went to “Dusty” Rhodes. Pat Cavenaugh was the main force for the Dinosaur Valley City nine as he slapped out three straight hits.

(June 6)  The Calgary Royals divided a Big Four League twin-bill with the Medicine Hat Royals at Glenmore, winning the rain-hampered first game 11 to 2 before bowing 3 to 1 in the second tilt.

The Cow Towners broke open a tight battle with three runs in the fourth panel of the opener as playing-manager Wally Cross went all the way for the hillock decision, holding the Hatters to just three hits while punching out nine and walking four. Medicine Hat starter Dennis Churchill absorbed the loss. Gerry Moffat and Russ Kindred paced the winners’ 14-hit attack with three singles each while Cross added a triple and one-bagger.

Churchill (L), Geisinger (8) and Ziebart
Cross (W) and Moffat

Both teams acquired eight safeties in the wind-up joust as the invading Gas City pastimers scored all of their runs in the top-of-the-ninth chapter to overcome a 1 – 0 deficit and gain the split. Fred Stewart, who ascended the knoll in the fifth, picked up the win while Dave Powell, who went the route for the Calgarians, suffered the loss. “Zeke” Ziebart of the victors and Vic Luciak of the vanquished nine had two safeties each for their respective versions of the Royal nine. 

Geisinger, Stewart (W) (5) and Ziebart
Powell (L) and Brandenburg

(June 6)  After being blown out 13 to 0 by the Brooks Lions in the matinée portion of a doubleheader, the Drumheller Miners salvaged a 7 to 5 come-from-behind win in the twilight tilt to break even for the day. Brooks could do no wrong in the initial clash, outswatting the Miners by a 15 to 4 margin in easily manhandling the visitors. Neil Anderson went all the way in copping the easy hillock triumph. Roger Pozzo, the first of three Drumheller twirlers, was saddled with the defeat.

The second game started much the same for the invaders as they fell behind 5 – 0 after six spasms before notching a pair of tallies in the seventh and adding five in the ninth. Brooks, once again, ran up a healthy margin 13 to 8 edge in safe swats but the majority of these came early in the game. In posting the slab victory,  Pozzo returned to the mound after his first-game defeat and held the Lions to just two safeties after ascending the bump for starter Bob Trembecky in the second panel. Trembecky, however, had the hot hand with the lumber in this encounter, going four-for-four at the dish.

(June 13)  The Calgary Royals and the hosting Drumheller Miners split their Big Four Baseball League double-dip in which the Miners rallied, and then held off the Royals, for a 12 to 11 win in the opener. The Calgarians wouldn’t be denied in the second bout, however, and came away with a 6 to 4 verdict in extra innings.

The curtain-raiser turned into a slugfest with a total of 31 safeties being picked up by the foes, 18 by Drumheller. Don Pasutto picked up the mound win while the loss was charged to the second of four Calgary hurlers, Bill Plourd. Home runs were notched by Bob Sanderson and Al Longmore of the Royals and the Miners’ Jim Berlando.

In the sunset skirmish, the Miners rallied for three runs in the eighth inning to eventually force overtime. Wally Cross, who was knocked out in the fifth inning of the first contest, came on in relief in the eighth to get credit for the victory. The loss was pinned on Roger Pozzo. The Cow Towners had a hefty 15 to 7 margin in base hits. Calgary’s Dave Hornicek/Hornichuk blasted a four-ply clout in this encounter and added three doubles and a single over the course of the two-game set,

(June 13)  Ken Holcomb, arthritic elbow and all, tamed the invading Brooks Lions on three  hits in the opener of a Big Four League doubleheader at Athletic Park as the Medicine Hat Royals prevailed 8 to 2. The Royals completed the sweep with Dennis Churchill getting credit for the pitching win in an 11 to 7 conquest of the Leos under the lights.

Holcomb moved the ball well in his first appearance of the season. Brooks’ Mike Frey was the only opposition swatter to get a solid piece of the ball, lighting Holcomb up for a second-inning solo homer. Larry Plante had three singles and three RBI’s for the Hatters off the slants of losing chucker Neil Anderson, who was nicked for ten safeties. Rookie flychaser Gord Hamill picked up a double and a single.

Churchill needed relief help from Jack Stewart and Tony Geisinger to preserve the second-game win as the Brooks brigade outhit the victors by a 9 to 7 mark. Home runs by Jerry Stockburger and Jerry Daniels put the Gas City Gang ahead to stay. Plante had two more safeties while Frey added another brace of bingles in this tilt, bringing his daily total to four. First baseman Wolford, Bill Harstead and outfielder McDonald each singled twice for the Lions as their starting twirler Bill Beny absorbed the setback.

(June 20)  The homestanding Brooks Lions subdued the pace-setting Medicine Hat Royals twice, by scores of 10 to 1 and 7 to 6 , to tighten the standings in the Big Four Baseball League. Brooks opened up with a three-spot in the third inning of the first tussle, on some loose defensive play by the Hatters, and forged well in front 10 – 0 after six innings were in the books to put the game on ice for winning heaver Lloyd Chambers who turned the ball over Neil Anderson to mop up. Ken Holcomb took the mound defeat.  Bill Charlton had three safe swats for the victors while Chuck Moser doubled twice for the Gas City Gang.

The Lions captured the hard-hitting nightcap in walkoff fashion but not before a hotly-disputed infield fly call in the eighth inning allowed them to tie the score at 6 – 6. Mike Frey’s ninth-inning base rap drove in Chambers with the winning tally. Chambers nicked the apple for four safeties in this tilt to pace the Leos offensively and help make reliever Neil Anderson the winner. Teammate Charlton added another brace of bingles to his output for the day while Moser and Larry Plante both registered two safeties for the Hatters. Tony Geisinger was stuck with the loss.    

(June 20)  Backed by the outstanding pitching of playing-manager Wally Cross, the Calgary Royals moved into a tie for second place in the Big Four Baseball League by downing the Drumheller Miners 9 to 1 and 7 to 5. Cross, who was credited with both pitching wins, hurled nine innings only over the stretch of the doubleheader. He tossed a two-hitter in the abbreviated opening game and came on in relief of Jim Craig in the eighth episode of the twilight tussle.

Calgary manufactured their nine tallies on just four base hits off three Drumheller hurlers in the first scuffle which was called in the seventh spasm because of a dust storm. The Miners’ Stan Graham was tagged with the loss.
The follow-up skirmish had a great deal more offense as Drumheller banged out 14 hits to ten for the Stampede City nine. “Monk” McPhee of the Calgarians blasted a three-run homer in this nightcap battle to break up a 4 – 4 deadlock and put the Cow Towners in front to stay. Other round-trippers launched in the finale came off the bats of the Royals’ Bob Sanderson and Roger Pozzo of the Miners. The hurling defeat in this bout was charged to Don Pasutto.

Standings                W     L      Pts.
Medicine Hat             5     3      10                              
Calgary                  4     4       8
Drumheller               4     4       8
Brooks                   3     5       6

(July 3-4)  1965 Brooks annual baseball tournament

(July 11)  The defending Big Four League champion Medicine Hat Royals dumped the Drumheller Miners by identical scores of 6 to 3 in a two-game meeting in the Gas City.

Right-hander Ken Holcomb of the Hatters outdueled Drumheller’s Jim Berlando in the opening clash and was backed up by solid defensive work, especially by outfielder Terry Pederson who pulled off a pair of circus caches.
Six errors by the Miners in the sunset skirmish effectively killed their chances even though they had a 10 to 3 margin in base hits. Adding to their miseries were the nine stolen bases chalked up by the Blue Bloods. Medicine Hat starter and winner Jack Stewart pitched into the seventh inning before handing the ball over to Dennis Churchill who got the save. The hard-luck loser was Ron Brandenburg who pitched six innings of no-hit relief but was nicked for three unearned runs.

(July 11)  The Calgary Royals kept their Big Four League record at .500 when they divided the spoils of a doubleheader with the hosting Brooks Lions. The home team took the opener 4 to 1 while the Royals rebounded to annex the concluding tilt 10 to 8.

Neil Anderson, despite being touched for nine hits, was effective in the clutch and was the winning heaver in the opener. Wally Cross, tagged for ten safeties, was charged with the loss. “Dusty” Rhodes led the Lions with the lumber, spanking the sphere for a double and single. Vic Luciak and Kirk Evenrude each stroked a pair of singles for the Stampede City contingent.

Jim Craig, with eighth-inning relief help from Cross, captured the mound victory in the nightcap. A four-run splash in the third inning propelled the Royals on to victory. With a 12 to 5 margin in bases hits, the Calgarians were led once again from the batter’s box by Luciak as well as teammates Dave Hornicek/Hornichuk and Art James, all of whom came up with a pair of one-baggers. Brooks’ Chuck Pozzo duplicated the feat.  

(July 18)  The Medicine Hat Royals ran up six runs in the eighth inning for an 11 to 6 comeback win over the Brooks Lions in the afternoon half of a double-dip and then ran roughshod over the Leos 16 to 0 in the owl encounter portion of the twin-bill.

Bailing out starter Ken Holcomb in a hectic third frame of the opener that saw Brooks mount a 6 to 1 lead, reliever Tony Geisinger of the Royals blanked the Lions the rest of the way while his mates put together a hard-hitting retort. Geisinger chipped in with a two-run double and a run-scoring single in wiping out the deficit and building up a big lead. Losing twirler Neil Anderson was rocked from the slab in the eighth. Third sacker Jerry Daniels of the Hatters hammered the horsehide for three safe swats including a home run and a double.            

N. Anderson (L), Chambers (8) and Laurie
Holcombe, Geisinger (W) (3) and Senger

Lloyd Chambers, who toiled on the bump for the Lions over the final 1-1/3 innings of the curtain-raiser, was sent back into action on the slab in the second encounter and suffered through a 11-hit Gas City bombardment with out any relief assistance. Eight fielding miscues by his clubmates made things even more difficult. Meanwhile, the Royals’ Dennis Churchill was breezing to victory with a nifty two-hitter. Jack Crockett ripped a double and two singles for the victors while Daniels and Gord Hamill each came through with a two-bagger and single.

Chambers (L) and Laurie
Churchill (W) and Senger

(July 25)  Playing in the lair of the hosting Brooks Lions, third baseman Jerry Daniels of the Medicine Hat Royals smashed home runs in both ends of a double-bill that helped earn the Blue Bloods 8 to 2 and 12 to 3 victories over the Leos. The twin triumphs assured the Hatters of at least a tie for top spot in the 1965 Big Four pennant chase. Daniels went yard with a grand salami tater in the opening fracas and then followed up by dialing long distance for a three-run dinger in the late bout. 

Sharing the spotlight with Daniels in the opening-game triumph were second sacker Chuck Moser and winning tosser Dennis Churchill. Moser claimed four of the 14-hits surrendered by losing chucker Neil Anderson, drilling a double to go along with three singles, good for five RBI’s. Although Churchill managed only one strikeout and walked seven, he turned stingy on hits for the hosts, allowing just three, all singles.

Churchill (W) and Senger
N. Anderson (L) and Laurie

The Royals coasted to victory in the second contest, raking losing flinger Gord Kay and reliever Bob Laurie for 18 base blows. Winning moundsman Tony Geisinger gave up three of the six hits and both runs garnered by the Brooks Brigade before exiting in the seventh spasm in favor of Jack Stewart. Jerry Stockburger, Moser, Larry Plante and Terry Pederson all cuffed three hits for the Gas City nine while Daniels ripped a two-bagger in addition to his round-tripper. John Charlton had a double and single for the losers and drove in both of their runs.

Geisinger (W) and Senger
Kay (L), Laurie (3) and Harstead

(July 25)  The second-place Calgary Royals trimmed the Drumheller Miners 3 to 1 in the seven-inning opener of a Big Four League doubleheader then completed the sweep by capturing an 8 to 6 verdict in the nightcap.
Jim Craig scattered six hits in the matinée event the earn his third pitching victory of the campaign. The winners were only able to nick hard-luck loser Larry Noble for three safeties.

Playing-manager Wally Cross copped the hurling triumph over the Miners’ John Edmundson in the wind-up scuffle. Dave Hornicek/Hornichuk of the Calgarians ripped a two-run circuit-clout while Drumheller’s Jack Samuels connected for a solo shot.

(August 8)  The Medicine Hat Royals bounced back from a 9 to 6 trimming to shutout the Drumheller Miners 9 to 0 and lay claim to the 1965 Big Four Baseball League regular-season pennant. Drumheller’s playing-manager Jim Berlando, who came on in the second inning of the opener in relief of starting pitcher Larry Noble after the Hatters had jumped into a 4 – 1 lead, pitched effectively the rest of the way and earned the win. Tony Geisinger was clipped with the loss. Jack Samuels went three-for-five at the plate for the winners while teammate Ron Brandenburg had the game’s only home run.

The Royals made no mistake in the next tussle, pounding the offerings of loser Bob Trembecky and fifth-inning reliever Berlando for ten base knocks. All the while, hurler Jack Stewart of the Blue Bloods was stifling the Dinosaur Valley City aggregation on four hits to annex the hillock victory. Jerry Daniels launched  a three-run tater for the winners that reportedly cleared the outfield fence and hit the roof of a schoolhouse near the ball park.

(August 8)  The Calgary Royals fell short of tying the Medicine Hat diamond troopers for top spot in the Big Four League as they could do no better than splitting a doubleheader with the Brooks Lions, winning 8 to 4 after dropping the opener 6 to 5.

Neil Anderson stopped Calgary on four hits in gaining the knoll decision in the lid-lifter. Wally Cross, who was relieved by Dave Powell in the fifth, was the loser.

Jim Craig limited the Lions to six hits and breezed eight in the Cow Towners’ second-game triumph. Gord Kay was the loser.

Final standings          W     L     Pts.
Medicine Hat            12     4     24 
Calgary                 10     6     20
Drumheller               5    11     10
Brooks                   5    11     10

SEMI-FINALS  Drumheller vs Medicine Hat & Brooks vs Calgary  (best-of-five series)

(August 14-15)  Each club held a victory after the pennant-winning Medicine Hat Royals and the Drumheller Miners locked horns in the first two games of their Big Four semi-final held at Athletic Park over the weekend. Saturday night, under the lights, the hometown Blue Bloods came on early and when the dust had settled, defeated the Dinosaur Valley City nine 6 to 3 while Sunday afternoon, the Miners rebounded to tie the best-of-five series with an 8 to 6 triumph.

A 14-strikeout performance by winning pitcher Dennis Churchill, during the Hatters’ Saturday victory, was tempered somewhat by his issuance of eight bases-on-balls. Neither team mounted much in the way of an offense, both squads garnering just four safeties. Bob Trembecky of the visitors, with a double and single, was the lone batter in the game to have plural hit totals. Tight-fisted Jim Berlando, toeing the rubber for the Miners, whiffed eight and walked an equal number but ten stolen bases by the Gas City Gang provided the hosts with much of their scoring threat. Medicine Hat’s Chuck Moser made the most of Berlando’s three free passes to him by coming around to score on each occasion. Larry Plante knocked in two of the victors’ runs.

Berlando (L) and Ickringill
Churchill (W) and Senger

Drumheller used losing tosser Tony Geisinger’s two walks and three key singles to run up a 6 – 0 lead in the top-of-the-second stanza of the Sunday clash. The Royals put together four singles for a four-tally comeback in their half of the canto but were never able to catch up with the Dinosaur Valley nine as the game progressed. Each team chalked up eight base raps as Bob Trembecky of the victors and the Hatters’ Jerry Daniels each connected for a four-ply clout with Daniels’ blow coming with one mate aboard. Youthful Roger Pozzo, on the hill for the Miners, went the distance for the win and was backed up by the spectacular defensive work of playing-manager Jim Berlando at the shortstop position. Third baseman Larry Noble of the Miners led all batters with a double and a pair of singles.

Geisinger (L) and Senger
Pozzo (W) and Ickringill

(August 15)  In the other half of the Big Four semi-finals which opened in Brooks, the hometown Lions and the Calgary Royals split a two-game set as the Cow Towners grabbed the opener 12 to 10 while the Lions got back on even terms by taking a narrow 4 to 3 second-encounter verdict.

A grand-slam home run by Bob Sanderson sparked the Calgarians’ come-from-behind win in the matinée tilt. Jim Craig, providing adept relief assistance to rangy right-hander Wally Cross, earned the mound decision. Dave Hornicek/Hornichuk of the victorious Royals also launched a four-bagger in the slugfest.

Cross made a second start on the bump in the follow-up joust and, although he was able to go the route, was bested in his mound duel with the Lions’ Gordie Kay. “Dusty” Rhodes homered for Brooks in this contest.

(August 22)  The Drumheller Miners shaded the Medicine Hat Royals in the first game of a crucial Big Four playoff twin-bill at John Anderson Memorial Park but had to be content with an 11 – 11 tie in the second tilt. The semi-final action leaves Drumheller in the driver’s seat as they hold a 2 – 1 margin in the series.

In the curtain-raiser, the Hatters held a 13 to 8 margin in base hits but were never able to overcome a six-run second inning outbreak by the Miners. Roger Pozzo persevered on the knoll to outlast the numerous scoring threats posed by the Blue Bloods and escape with the win. Gas City playing-manager “Zeke” Ziebart suffered the loss.  Larry Noble drilled a double and two singles for the winners while teammate Bob Trembecky clubbed a round-tripper. Hot corner custodian Jerry Daniels was best with the baton for the vanquished Royals, smashing a home run, double and single.

The Medicine Hat pastimers held a 9 – 1 lead after three innings of the sunset skirmish but failed maintain their huge advantage, surrendering a six-spot to the Miners in the sixth spasm and allowing the hosts to deadlock the score with a deuce in the bottom-of-the-ninth. Darkness prevented any chance of playing overtime. Jim Berlando, Ron Brandenburg and Larry Noble shared mound duties for Drumheller while Tony Geisinger, with ninth-inning relief help from Jerry Stockburger, toed the rubber for the Gas City nine. Daniels belted his second dinger of the day, a grand-slam tater that helped stake the Hatters to their early lead. Drumheller’s Noble also continued his torrid batting spree in this event, launching a four-bagger to go along with a double. 

(August 22)  The Calgary Royals sidelined the Brooks Lions from the Big Four League playoff picture by capturing 3 to 2 and 7 to 5 victories at Glenmore Park in the Stampede City. Jim Craig struck out ten Brooks batters to win the tightly-contested opener against Neil Anderson.

In the series’ clincher, ace slabster Wally Cross of the Royals won the mound decision over the Lions’ Gord Kay. Al Longmore rammed a two-run homer for the winners while Monroe/Munroe McPhee stung the pill for a triple, double and single.

(August 29)  With their backs to the wall, the defending Big Four League champion Medicine Hat Royals came through in the clutch, defeating the Drumheller Miners twice, by 8 to 3 and 15 to 7 counts, to win their semi-final set three games to two.

Facing a 3 to 1 deficit entering the sixth inning of the opening game, the Royals tied the score on a two-run homer off the bat of Jerry Daniels. A four-run outbreak in the next stanza lifted the Hatters into the lead for good and dampened the spirits of the Miners. A double by Jerry Stockburger, his first of two, drove in two of the four counters. Complete-game winning hurler “Zeke” Ziebart held the Dinosaur Valley squad to seven hits over the route with three of those safeties, a double and two singles, being stroked by hard-hitting Bob Trembecky. Roger Pozzo, lit up for nine safeties, absorbed the setback. Terry Pederson of the winners. clipped the apple for a double and single. The Blue Bloods ran wild on the basepaths, accumulating six thefts
Pozzo (L) and Ickringill
Ziebart (W) and Senger

Ken Holcomb, returning to the mound after being sidelined for close to a month with a nagging injury, allowed the Miners only two of their five hits over the 5-1/3 innings he toiled on the hill in earning the win. He replaced starter Tony Geisinger in the fourth frame. Losing chucker Jim Berlando, combed for a dozen base knocks, went all the way on the knoll for Drumheller. Cold weather played havoc with the defenses of both competitors, the Miners making 12 miscues to seven for the Royals. The victors also continued to take all sorts of liberties on the basepaths, racking up another 16 stolen bases. Chuck Moser had three hits and a pair of RBI’s for the winners while Holcomb drove in four runs with a brace of bingles. Outfielder Mathers had two singles and an equal number of RBI’s for the vanquished nine.

Berlando (L) and Ickringill
Geisinger, Holcomb (W) (4) and Senger

FINALS  Calgary Royals vs Medicine Hat Royals  (best-of-five series)

(September 5)  Wet field conditions caused the postponement of the first two games of the Big Four League finals, scheduled for Calgary’s Glenmore Park.

(September 12)  Pitching ace Wally Cross and his Calgary Royals’ teammates decisively whipped the hosting Medicine Hat Royals to win the 1965 Big Four Baseball League championship. The Stampede City baseballers with iron-man Cross pitching all 18 innings of the two-game set at Athletic Park, nipped the 1964 titlists 4 to 3 in the first skirmish and then went on to cream the Hatters 13 to 3 in the final scuffle to capture the final series in two straight matches. The series had originally been a best-of-five affair before impossible playing conditions reduced the showdown to a best-of-three event.

The homesters appeared to have the opening tussle well in hand after they scored a pair of markers in the fourth inning and added another tally in the fifth to take a 3 – 0 lead. Medicine Hat starter “Zeke” Ziebart pulled himself for pinch-hitter Mac Kryznoski in the sixth stanza. Then, in the seventh spasm, reliever Tony Geisinger was met with a four-hit Calgary barrage which netted them four counters and the lead. Goose eggs for both sides in the eighth and ninth ended the clash.

In the nightcap, Cross not only stifled the Gas City Gang on five hits but was an offensive force as well, smashing out four singles in five times at bat. Starter Ken Holcomb of the Hatters was derricked in the seventh stanza during a ten-run surge by the Cow Towners which essentially settled the issue. Outfielder Jim Bain belted a two-run tater for the new Big Four League champs.



This central-Alberta circuit received virtually no newspaper coverage in 1965, the major reason being the absence of a Red Deer team in the loop.



(August 15)  Bowden took a two-game lead in the best-of-five Rosebud Baseball League best-of-five finals with two narrow victories over pennant winning Innisfail. Stan Simpson was the winning pitcher in both contests with the score being 1 to 0 in each.


Breton Eagles
Calmar Angels
Calmar Cubs 
Devon Safeway Kings
Glen Park Aces 
Leduc Oilers
Warburg Buffaloes

SEMI-FINALS  (best-of-three series)

(July 21)  The Warburg Buffaloes easily disposed of the Breton Eagles 9 to 1 and 18 to 0 while the Calmar Cubs moved into the league finals by taking a pair of 3 to 2 cliff hangers from the Devon Safeway Kings.

FINALS  (best-of-three series)

(July 28)  Leeson Ruff tossed a four-hitter as the Warburg Buffaloes blanked the Calmar Cubs 6 to 0 in the opening game of the Oilfield League finals. Ruff whiffed 11 and allowed only one Cub to reach third base. Teammate Barry Panky broke up a scoreless duel in the fourth inning with a three-run homer. Losing heaver Phil Hamula was touched for eight hits. Bob Fandrick slammed two singles in a losing cause.

(August 4)  Veteran right-hander Leeson Ruff pitched and batted the Warburg Buffaloes to a 14 to 5 victory over the Calmar Cubs to win the 1965 Oilfield Baseball League crown. Ruff went to the hill in relief in the second inning with the score tied 2 – 2. He held the Cubs to three hits and two walks the rest of the way, fanning nine over the route. He also drove in five runs with three hits, including a pair of doubles. Warburg will now host the winner of the Edmonton Sunburst League playoffs


Black Sivalls & Bryson Tankers
Edmonton City Police Athletics
Safeway Skylarks
Winterburn Tomahawks

FINALS  (best-of-five series)

(August 19)  The Safeway Skylarks defeated the City Police Athletics 15 to 5 in the opening game of the Sunburst League finals. Winning hurler Don Sharun gave up only two hits. Meanwhile, teammates Archie Miskew and Rich Maertz walloped home runs and Eugene Sharun banged out three triples. The losing pitcher was Wayne Smith.

(September 9)  The Safeway Skylarks blanked the City Police Athletics 3 to 0 at Coronation Park to tie the best-of-five Sunburst League finals at two games each. Jim Strobel had three hits, including a triple, in support of winning pitcher Don Sharun. Saddled with the hillock setback was Wayne Smith.

(September 12)  The Safeway Skylarks beat the City Police Athletics 11 to 5 in the deciding game of the 1965 Sunburst League finals at Coronation Park. Don Sharun, the winning pitcher, was voted the outstanding player in the five-game series. 


Bow Island Combines
Foremost Junior Braves
Irvine Mercurys
Medicine Hat Juniors
Medicine Hat Junior Tigers
Redcliffe Red Sox




Teams representing southern, central and northern Alberta were originally scheduled to meet in a round-robin tournament over the Labor Day weekend to decide a provincial winner. In the end, however, only the northern and central areas of Alberta sent teams.

NORTHERN ALBERTA SEMI-FINALS  Two Hills vs Viking Shamrocks and Oilfield Baseball League winners vs Edmonton Sunburst Baseball League champions  (best-of-three series)

(August 8)  A brother act has given the Safeway Skylarks of the Edmonton Sunburst League a one-game lead in the northern Alberta intermediate “A” semi-finals. The Sharun brothers, Allan, Eugene and Don, provided the power and the pitching as the Skylarks edged the hosting Warburg Buffaloes of the Oilfield League 6 to 5. The brothers collected five of Safeway’s eight hits with Allan crashing a two-run homer in the fifth inning to deadlock the score 3 – 3. Eugene drove in the deciding run in the eighth with his third hit of the contest. Don Sharun, a smooth-working southpaw, gave up 12 hits in recording the mound victory.

(August 15) The Viking Shamrocks of the Eastern Alberta Baseball League sidelined Two Hills in one northern Alberta semi-final bracket.

(August 15)  Two veteran pitchers carried the Warburg Buffaloes of the Oilfield Baseball League to the northern Alberta intermediate “A” finals. 32-year old Leeson Ruff struck out 19 as the Buffs edged the Edmonton Sunburst Baseball League’s Safeway Skylarks 1 to 0 in a 14-inning marathon that deadlocked the series. Then, 39-year old curveball specialist Newell Pickerd allowed only six hits as Warburg bombed Safeway 11 to 2 in the deciding game at Coronation Park. The Bisons now advance to face the Viking Shamrocks of the Eastern Alberta League in a best-of-three duel.

NORTHERN ALBERTA FINALS   Viking Shamrocks vs Warburg Buffaloes  (best-of-three series)


(August 22)  Garfield Winters and Brian Gaume had three hits each as the Viking Shamrocks overpowered the hosting Warburg Buffaloes 11 to 4 in the opening game of the northern Alberta intermediate “A” baseball finals. Winters also picked up the pitching win with a six-inning relief stint. Newell Pickerd was tagged with the loss.
A second game, to be counted only in the event of a rainout in Viking on August 29, followed the first-game thumping but once again the invading Shamrocks clouted the horsehide all over the lot and came away as 17 to 10 winners. Winning pitcher Gabe Brissard crashed a three-run homer in support of his knoll effort. Warburg’s Raymond Broadbent was saddled with the loss.

Over the course of the two-game set, power-hitting Winters drove in 12 runs on six hits, three of which were home runs including one with the bases loaded.

(August 29)  The Viking Shamrocks, with the help of the weatherman, were awarded the northern Alberta intermediate “A” baseball title when rain prevented resumption of their series at home against the Warburg Buffaloes. The rain-out meant that the second-half of the August 22 double-bill was counted as part of the best-of-three series.

ALBERTA FINALS  Stettler Elks vs Viking Shamrocks  (best-of-three series)

(September 5-6)  Nothing to date has been uncovered as to the winner of this series or, in fact, if it was even played as the weather forecast for the Labor Day weekend in Viking was not promising.