While many Quesnel girls have sung their last softball cheer for the summer, a select few will make their way across to Vancouver Island to participate in the 2018 B.C. Summer Games.
The tournament, which will be held in Cowichan this year and runs from July 19-22, will feature an Under-16 softball team with eight Quesnel players and six from Prince George.
They will include four members of the Quesnel Thunderbirds (the local rep team) and four of the best house league players from the city.
Kaitlyn Ducette, who played for the Thunderbirds this year, likes the team’s chances at the tournament.
“We’ve got a lots of commitment towards our team,” she says, while standing with her team mates just outside the West Fraser Timber Park diamonds.
“There’s a lot of making sure we’re mentally there as well as physically. We cheer each other on a lot.
“And if we see someone come in after they’ve struck out, we say ‘It’s alright, you’ll get it next time.’”
They are a true team in every sense of the word and, as such, are quick to sing each other’s praises.
The girls all agreed that Destiny Bautista, who plays catcher shortstop and anywhere else the team needs her, has improved in leaps-and-bounds in her first year with the T-Birds.
“She’s a really good fielder because she’s really fast,” says Rilee Paterson.
Don Ducette, who was an assistant coach for the T-Birds explains how the girls are picked.
“There was a tryout in early spring where we did evaluations,” he says.
“Each of the girls went through a series of skills and we actually had a group of eight people watching every drill and they evaluated the ladies.”
He is also optimistic for the teams success.
“The chances are good,” he says.
“We had a solid team with the Thunderbirds but picking up the other Quesnel girls, a few of whom are older, is really going to help with the maturity level.”
Top row – left to right: Kianna Mero, Rylee Paterson, Kailtyn Doucette, Riley Telford
Bottom row – left to right: Destiny Bautista, Amelia Musselman, Grace Currie, Tatum Mueller