The Wellesley Wildcats Fastball U21 team is about three-quarters of the way through the Huron County Fastball League season, narrowly in the lead this week ahead of 13 other teams. Right on the Wildcats tails are the Wingham Hitmen in second and the Tavistock Athletics in third, though there is still plenty more that can change in the next few weeks.
The team has been on five-game win streak for the past two weeks that started with an epic fastball game the previous Sunday against the Fullarton A’s on their home turf, which ended 16-15 for the Wildcats.
“(The game was) very interesting,” said coach Paul Schnarr with a laugh. “We were running 8-0 in the second inning, and ended up being tied 11-11 in the 7th. We scored five runs on top of the 7th and they came back with four runs in the bottom of the 7th, so we just hung on.”
Most recently, the team took on the visiting Hitmen on Tuesday night, posting a 10-3 win.
That game could have gone either way because the two leading teams had yet to face each other this season.
The Wildcats joined the Huron County league this year in part because of the cancelled nationals, says Schnarr.
“There usually is a Canadian championship, but year there isn’t because of the (Canada) Summer Games going on so they cancelled.”
Schnarr says that they’re enjoying playing in the new league, but admits the drives out to Huron County can be cumberson. Still, he says they might be coming back next year – that will depends on the boys.
Schnarr has been coaching the team for almost a decade now, and he says they remain committed to the game.
“The nucleus of this team won the Canadian championship in 2014, so we’re very competitive. Our provincials and everything is over now – we didn’t do too well in the provincials this year – played a bunch of men’s tournaments, we did not too bad.”
As for the team’s chances to clinch the top spot in the league, Schnarr is cautious. “We’ll see what happens. There’s a lot of ball to be played yet. It’d be nice, but there’s lots of ball to play yet.”
The team has another eight games to go, with a matchup against the Wroexler Royals at their field tomorrow.
There are 13 teams playing in the league from the Huron County and Huron County-adjacent regions, competing in seven-inning games over the course of three months. The season is expected to wrap up early September.