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There’s a new look to NSRBL this season

Meadow Lake out, Oil City Ducks, Glaslyn Orioles, Lashburn Cardinals are in.
The Battlefords Beavers’ opening day is in Glaslyn with their home opener set for May 15 against the Lloyd Twins with a 7:30 p.m. start.

THE BATTLEFORDS — The North Saskatchewan River Baseball League has a new look for the 2024 season.

Done are the Meadow Lake Sox, whose roster included the only woman playing in this senior men’s baseball league. There is a new team called the Oil City Ducks, which is a Lloydminster U19 team. Lloyd often included their U19 team in this league and are returning this season.

NSRBL welcomes back the Glaslyn Orioles in 2023, who were part of this men’s league a decade ago and re-established their team last year. They will be part of the lineup looking to win the league title this season.

Newcomers, Lashburn Cardinals will join the NSRBL this season. The team is made up primarily of junior age players from the U22 ranks.

Familiar returning teams joining these new additions include the North Battleford Beavers, Unity Cardinals, Mervin Flyers, Standard Hill Lakers, Lloydminster Twins and the Wilkie Brewers.

Kyle Gregoire, spokesperson for the North Battleford Beavers told the North Battleford Regional News Optimist/, “Our team hasn’t changed a lot. We are looking forward to the season and hope to have another deep run.” The Beavers are 2023 league champions.

“We did lose a couple of key players that have been with the team for a few years, but we are also gaining some great young talent through the North Battleford Minor Baseball system,” adds Gregorie.

Commissioners for the 2024 season for the NSRBL are Regan L’Heureux and Lorne Nielsen, sharing duties as co-commissioners.

The Beavers’ opening day is in Glaslyn with their home opener set for May 15 against the Lloyd Twins with a 7:30 p.m. start.

Gregoire affirms the Beavers are committed to senior provincials this season as well as playing host to the 35-plus senior provincials July 5-7, with a few ex-Beavers on that roster.

Rob Cey, of the 2022 NSRBL league champions, Wilkie Brewers says of their upcoming season, “Obviously we are in a bit of a strange situation given that we were league champions in 2022 and did not have a team in 2023. In 2022 the Unity Cardinals did not have a team so we had a few key additions from the current senior Cardinals that helped lead us to success.

“With those players playing in Unity again in the 2023 season we felt that it would be too challenging for us to field a team every game. We are in a situation where the core of our team is busy coaching their own kids for the majority of the season or else they are dealing with greater responsibilities at work.

“However, it was obvious that many of our players missed competing together last year (2023).”

Cey acknowledges the Brewers are trying to get creative for their 2024 schedule, bringing some younger players into the fold for the nights when veteran players are busy with work or coaching. It did require permission at the league meeting, to allow for some flexibility with the Brewers, and that was a key reason they are back in the league.

The Brewers’ schedule will include some weekend games, including two Friday night double headers in North Battleford.

In other news from the league, the Unity Cardinals will officially retire their existing 60-year-old baseball diamond after the 2024 season. An ambitious and industrious plan is in motion to completely overhaul the diamond in three phases. The old diamond will be dismantled and the new diamond will be rotated. The committee says their end result will entail a facility that personifies the Cardinals’ incredible history and brilliant future. See full story on