GOLDEN CELEBRATION - Lacombe Matrix celebrates with gold medals after defeating the Amisk Heat 12-3 at the Alberta U19 Provincial Softball Championships. Back row from left are

GOLDEN CELEBRATION - Lacombe Matrix celebrates with gold medals after defeating the Amisk Heat 12-3 at the Alberta U19 Provincial Softball Championships. Back row from left are

Lacombe Matrix brings home the gold

Some of Lacombe’s softball players came home last weekend sporting some new hardware.

Some of Lacombe’s softball players came home last weekend sporting some new hardware.

At the Alberta U19 Provincial Softball Championship on June 30th, Lacombe Matrix defeated the Amisk Heat 12-3 to capture the gold medal.

Lacombe Matrix catcher Brooke McBurney said that having the gold medal was an incredible feeling.

“It feels great,” said McBurney. She added that some players only get to play in the provincial tournament once in their lives and for many of her teammates it would be their last time at provincials in minor ball.

Coach Martin Sherrer said the record for the Lacombe Matrix was only so-so during the season. He said they were fairly even between wins and losses but a strong performance and winning a tournament the weekend before provincials proved the team could work well together.

Lacombe Matrix is made up of a hodgepodge of players from different communities. Players from Ponoka, Red Deer as well as Lacombe all appear on the roster. McBurney said getting to know the other players, most of who hadn’t even met before, was the biggest obstacle to overcome as a team. She added the team’s improved performance was a result of the players building some chemistry.

“I think we just became more comfortable around each other because we got to know each other better and we became more of a team,” said McBurney.

Sherrer agreed.

“It was a throw-together team,” he said. “It took a little while to come together, but with some practice and some dedication from the girls it started to pay off.”

Going into provincials, Sherrer and the team were unsure of how they would do. He said if the team had won only half of their games, he would have considered it a success.

However, the team performed much better than that. Lacombe Matrix won five out of six games, including those in the provincial playoffs and captured the gold medal. It was after winning their last round robin game to secure a place in provincial playoffs that the team started to think they had a shot at the championship, said Sherrer.

However, McBurney was beginning to feel more comfortable as soon as the second game in the round robin. McBurney said the team was hitting well, fielding well and having a good time.

Having fun was important to the team, said McBurney. She added that, when the team was having fun, the tended to play well. If they weren’t having fun, something was going wrong.

Both Sherrer and McBurney said that Lacombe Matrix went into provincials acting like they could win the tournament. Sherrer added that players were even a little cocky, but when it came time to put up or shut up, they were able to put their money where their mouths were.

“They acted like they could win and then they put it together on the field,” said Sherrer.

The tournament was not without its challenges though. McBurney said that in the semi-final, Lacombe’s opponents were one run away from winning the game in the final inning, making for a tense match.

At the end of the gold medal match, Lacombe Matrix was overjoyed with the outcome.

“They were ecstatic,” said Sherrer. “They couldn’t believe that they had managed to pull a so-so season together and peak just at the right time.”

Sherrer said that the team excelled because, while Lacombe Matrix was not exceptionally skilled in every aspect of the game, each player had certain skills and they were able to play a style of ball that capitalized on what skills the team did have.

He added that hitting improved greatly throughout the season and Lacombe’s pitching was, in his mind, the best at provincials.

“We have some really good local talents,” said Sherrer.

news@lacombeexpress.com

 

Just Posted

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw reported five additional deaths Wednesday due to COVID-19. (File photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Red Deer at 169 active cases of COVID-19

Province set to move into Stage 2 of reopening Thursday

t
How to tell if a call from ‘CRA’ is legitimate or a scam

Expert says it’s important to verify you really are dealing with the CRA before you give out any info

Grade 12 students at Wetaskiwin Composite High School took place in the annual water fight off school property on June 11, 2021. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
Graduating students in Wetaskiwin throw water fight after being told it could result in suspension

Students were told their participation could result in them being barred from graduation ceremonies.

The arrest south of Winnipeg occurred before Bernier was to arrive at a protest in the city. (Twitter/Maxime Bernier)
Maxime Bernier arrested following anti-rules rallies in Manitoba: RCMP

He’s been charged with exceeding public gathering limits and violating Manitoba’s requirement to self-isolate

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for the G7 Summit, at the airport in Newquay, United Kingdom, Thursday, June 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Details on Canada’s vaccine sharing plan coming Sunday, up to 100 million doses

Canada’s high commissioner to the UK says details will come after the G7 summit

Conservative MP Tom Kmiec waves to the crowd during the Calgary Stampede parade in Calgary, Friday, July 8, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Newborn daughter’s death inspires MP’s bill on bereavement leave for parents

Conservative MP Tom Kmiec says a day or two off not enough for some grieving parents

Victoria’s 2020 Canada Day celebration will not happen this year. (Black Press Media file photo)
Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations backs cancelling Canada Day celebration

Statement made after Victoria cancels Canada Day event as a statement of reconciliation

United Nurses of Alberta is slamming Health Minister Tyler Shandro for suggesting staff vacations are causing emergency room problems. (Black Press Media files)
Physicians were suffering burnout and then the pandemic made it worse, UBC study finds

Burnout prevalent among 68 per cent of doctors – likely a reflection of issue globally, says researcher

Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson responds to a question during Question Period in the House of Commons Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020 in Ottawa. The federal government is bringing in a new coal policy saying new or expanded thermal coal mines create unacceptable environmental impacts.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Unacceptable environmental effects:’ New federal policy restricts thermal coal

Policy puts another roadblock in front of Coalspur Mines and its Alberta Vista mine expansion

Kawasaki City Institute for Public Health Director General Nobuhiko Okabe speaks during a press conference after a roundtable on COVID-19 countermeasures at Tokyo 2020 Games in Tokyo, Friday, June 11, 2021. A group of experts participated in a third roundtable on COVID-19 countermeasures proposed for audience-related infection control. (Franck Robichon/Pool Photo via AP)
Tokyo Olympics still undecided on fans — or no fans at all

Fans from abroad already banned from what is shaping up to be a largely made-for-television event

Most Read