Opening Weekend Photo Gallery
June 21, 2021 9:46 pm | by
| Posted In
Feature News, News
At long last, the Western Canadian Baseball League (WCBL) returned to action with Opening Day games taking place in Sylvan Lake and Lethbridge on Friday, June 18th. The Okotoks Dawgs marked their home opener on Sunday, June 20th at Seaman Stadium.
The perseverance of the WCBL in bringing the 2021 season to fruition offers joy and positivity, not only to the players, coaches and baseball fans, but to the communities we operate in, as well.
A sunny day at the ballpark means more than just baseball this summer. It signifies hope, optimism, and a return to normalcy for a province in need of something to celebrate.
For the Sylvan Lake Gulls, this time marks the birth of a franchise and the official opening of Gulls Stadium. For the Edmonton Prospects, it means their longest road trip ever. In Okotoks, the Dawgs are showing off their iconic Core 4 (+14) Corner expansion while they defend their 2019 WCBL championship. The Lethbridge Bulls, meanwhile, are ready to compete and show their fans an entertaining time at Spitz Stadium.
Baseball is back. Thankfully.
We captured some of the sights from the Gulls first ever game in Sylvan Lake, and at the Dawgs home opener on Father’s Day. We hope you enjoy.
A panoramic view of Gulls Stadium in Sylvan Lake as the coaches submit lineup cards to the umpires at home plate.
Players line the field as opening ceremonies take place at Gulls Stadium on June 18, 2021.
Edmonton Prospects players applaud during the opening ceremonies in Sylvan Lake.
Sylvan Lake coach Jason Chatwood, flanked by some little helpers, greets the umpiring crew and Edmonton skipper Jordan Blundell at home plate before the start of the game.
A view of the seating at Gulls Stadium, the protective netting, and the home dugout before the game.
Okotoks Dawgs and Lethbridge Bulls players stand for the national anthem at Seaman Stadium on June 20, 2021.
The Okotoks crowd, as well as the umpires, observed a moment of silence for Mitch Ball, an elite WCBL umpire who passed away during the offseason. Ball was remembered before the start of each season-opening game for all WCBL teams.
Dawgs assistant coach Dave Robb and Lethbridge coach Chance Wheatley submit their lineup cards to the home plate umpire.
Pitcher Flynn Ridley warms up beneath the Grog & Grub concession stand, as fans look on from Core 4(+14) Corner, an iconic patio and seating area of Seaman Stadium that sits above the visitor clubhouse.
Who let the Dawgs out?! Members of the Dawgs Red squad return to the dugout from player introductions and opening ceremonies at the team’s home opener at Seaman Stadium on June 20, 2021.
Sylvan Lake Gulls signage and logos adorn the wall behind home plate at Gulls Stadium. A limited capacity crowd, capped at one-third capacity due to COVID-19 protocols, looks on in advance of the team’s first WCBL game against Edmonton.
Lefty pitcher Jake Finkelstein was the Opening Day starting pitcher for the Sylvan Lake Gulls, meaning he threw out the first pitch in team history.
Julian Tymochko, seen here delivering a pitch as first baseman McCoy Pearce looks on, was the Opening Day starting pitcher for the Edmonton Prospects.
Edmonton’s outfielders – Conor Bronson (24), Stephen Horner (22), and Jonny McGill – are all smiles as they return to the dugout.
Assistant coach Ty Barclay (left) talks things over with catcher Wyatt Schnorr (23) and pitcher Jake Finkelstein (right).
Noah Or squares to bunt for the Bulls as Okotoks catcher Caleb Lumbard awaits the offering.
Southpaw hurler Graham Brunner pitched five frames of shutout ball and picked up 6 Ks for Dawgs Red. He collected the win during the 9-6 triumph over Lethbridge.
Flynn Ridley pitched well in a losing cause, surrendering two runs through four innings for Lethbridge.
Fans look on from Core 4 (+14) Corner in left field.
Outfielder Tucker Zdunich (7) celebrates a fourth inning home run after crossing home plate.
The moustachioed Trent Lawson was named the player of the game for the Prospects after his performance in Sylvan Lake. He went 5-for-6 with three doubles, three runs batted in and three runs scored during the 16-8 win over the Gulls.
Edmonton first baseman McCoy Pearce gets ready for his at bat during the season opener in Sylvan Lake on June 18, 2021.
Sylvan Lake head coach Jason Chatwood discusses a controversial call with the home plate umpire.
Cleary Simpson (21) touches home plate to record another first for the Gulls. This time it’s the first home run in team history.
Cleary Simpson’s historic blast gave Gulls fans a reason to cheer at their season opener.
Dawgs Red catcher Nick Hagen watches the game from the bullpen area at Seaman Stadium in Okotoks.
Brandon Hupe gets a helmet-bashing welcome after launching a grand slam in the bottom of the sixth inning for Dawgs Red. Okotoks blew the game open with seven runs in that inning.
Bulls catcher Ty Wevers connects with a pitch. He went 2-for-4 with a run scored on the day.
With a return to normal in sight, WCBL fans at all ballparks were reminded to adhere to safety protocols while attending games.
Dawgs Red players celebrate their 9-6 win over Lethbridge.
WCBL schedule for more information on upcoming games this summer.