July 15th, 2024

Elks blanked by the Lakers

By Lethbridge Herald on June 12, 2024.

Herald Photo by Justin Seward Lethbridge Elks Ben Puszkar attempts a sacrifice bunt during American Legion Baseball action against the Kalispell Lakers on Wednesday night at Spitz Stadium.

By Justin Seward

Lethbridge Herald


The Lethbridge Elks American Legion AA team remain winless through four conference games after being blanked by the Kalispell Lakers 2-0 at Spitz Stadium on Wednesday night.

“We just couldn’t put any runs on the board today unfortunately,” said Scott Oikawa, Elks head coach.

“We had some decent swings (and) hit some balls hard right at people. They’re a quality club, they played solid defence and threw pretty well. Unfortunately, we couldn’t come up with some key hits in key moments and couldn’t string some stuff together.”

Oikawa thinks the Elks will need to focus on every pitch in every inning.

“Conference games are tight and based on the parity, you definitely need to be ready to play every conference game,” Oikawa.

Elks starting pitcher was Jesse-James Olson thought  the Lakers had some good swings.

“So what they put a few hard swings on it, but that’s all ,” said Olson.

“They earned those runs, like  (there is) nothing I can do about that.”

Olson saw the Lakers as a discipline team at the plate.

“They made me work to find the zone and they made me throw strikes and that was probably the biggest challenge,” said Olson.

The Elks are hosting their annual Mary Oikawa Memorial Tournament this weekend.

“It’s always great to be playing in front of the home crowd and we often get to see a lot of alumni (and) they come to town to say hello,” said Oikawa.

“And so definitely looking forward to it and giving us an opportunity to work on some stuff before our next conference(game).”

Olson wants to see the Elks use the tournament to play their game and relax.

“We’re just going to go out there, do what we know how to do and we can just hope for the best,” said Olson.

The Elks open the tournament on Friday night at 7 p.m. versus Grande Prairie, followed by an 11:30 a.m. game on Saturday against the Calgary Cardinals and conclude the round robin with a game against Swift Current at 7 p.m. that night.

The championship game is at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday.

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