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Central Saanich Softball History

1954 Brentwood Softball Association – BC Provincial Champions in Three Divisions!!

1954 Juvenile Girls
Head Coach: Rom Knott

1954 Midget Girls
Head Coach: Claude Sluggett

1954 Bantam Girls
Head Coach: Rom Knott

 


In the late 1940’s, a group of local kids got together to play organized softball under the coaching of Rom Knott at the old McKevitt Field in Brentwood Bay. Within just a few years, up to 15 teams were registered each season in the Brentwood Softball Association which was affiliated with Softball BC. In 1954, three girls teams won Gold at the BC Championships: Juvenile, Midget, and Bantam. Many members of those teams still live in the community and are active in Central Saanich activities.

McKevitt Field was eventually subdivided for housing and a new field was developed in Brentwood Bay behind the Brentwood Community Hall in 1964. The land was purchased for $500 and all the money was raised in the community. Rom Knott Memorial Park was dedicated on May 9, 1966. In the early days, homeplate was next to the Community Hall (there was a concession in the basement) and the creek ran through (which now runs under right field in a big pipe). These and other challenges were faced then and over the years to make Rom Knott Park what it is to day. Like so many other excellent facilities in Central Saanich such as Centennial Park (started in 1958), the huge Brentwood School Fields project in 1995, etc. work and funding came from many sources and huge amounts of volunteer support.

Central Saanich Little League baseball began in 1969 and the boys seemed to make the switch from softball over to baseball down the road at Centennial Park – softball continued in Brentwood within the Boys and Girls Club. Little League Softball was incorporated into Little League International in about 1974 and Central Saanich, along with several other parks on lower Vancouver Island and elsewhere, introduced a softball program. Within a few years about 15 teams were registered each year with girls from 8 to 18 years old.

In 1995, the Central Saanich and District Fastpitch Association was formed. Initially there was a Midget “B”, Midget “C”, and Bantam “B” team for girls aged 15 and over. In the summer of 1999 there was “B” teams in PeeWee, Bantam, and Midget for girls aged 13 and over. Beginning with the 2000 season a full program of Recreational (“C”) and Competitive (“B”) was made available for girls aged 8 to 19.

2004 was another memorable year with 3 teams going to Provincial Championships. At Provincials, only 2 girls teams won gold and they were both from Central Saanich Extreme!!

2004 Squirt B Provincial Champions

2004 Midget C Provincial Champions

Many of the girls who have graduated from the local programs continue to play the game today as young ladies. In fact, recently there were more Central Saanich players in the Juniors program (up to 23 years old) in the Victoria-Saanich Woman’s League at Hyacinth Park than anywhere else – and they’re still having fun!! In 2001, as a Junior B team, Central Saanich won Gold at the Western Canadian Championships.

Success can be measured in a number of ways. In terms of winning district and provincial championships, we’ve had a few – less than some but more than many. The real success of the Central Saanich Softball programs have been the number of girls that have gone through the programs and how much fun they’ve had. Lifelong friendships of players, coaches, managers, executive and even umpires! have developed by meeting each other at Rom Knott and the Brentwood fields and sharing the game of Softball.