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Victoria HarbourCats – Pelletier named GM of HarbourCats

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November 16, 2021

VICTORIA, B.C. — The Victoria HarbourCats of the West Coast League announce today that Curtis Pelletier has been elevated to the position of General Manager, effective immediately.

Jim Swanson, the GM for most of the history of the Capital’s baseball team’s existence, and a part of the ownership group, remains in the role of Managing Partner, along with GM of the first year Nanaimo NightOwls, which will debut in the WCL in 2022.

Pelletier will no longer be in uniform for the HarbourCats, under third-year Head Coach Todd Haney, as he has since 2018, but Pelletier will continue to be GM/Head Coach of the Victoria Golden Tide of the CCBC, a team that just completed a successful first fall session and will resume play in March.

“I’m excited and driven in taking on this role, and I know there is much more potential we can realize,” said Pelletier, 40, a former college and pro player who also spent time with the National Junior team. “I know the WCL, I know the Victoria market, and I believe in the vision of Jim and the ownership group. We have a great team in the front office and together we can accomplish even more for this community.”

Pelletier has lived in Victoria most of his life, and has roots even deeper now as he and wife Lindsay welcomed twin girls a month ago.

Pelletier, an associate scout for the Miami Marlins, will oversee operations with the HarbourCats, working alongside Swanson, and with Assistant GM Christian Stewart, Marketing Director John Pollard, and Creative/Digital Director Chris Beveridge. The work includes many aspects such as gameday planning, marketing, supporting the coaching staff and players, coordinating travel logistics, and leading the talented front office.

The move allows Swanson to give even more attention to the foundational needs of the new team in Nanaimo, though he will remain actively involved with the HarbourCats operation.

“We are fortunate to have such dedicated, loyal people, who share the vision and drive to not just maintain, but to grow our ability to have a positive impact in the community,” said Swanson. “Curtis has been with us four years and has led many areas of growth for the HarbourCats — the WCL team, the Golden Tide, the youth components and now our indoor facility, the Edwards Family Training Centre, as well. Curtis gets things done, and is a selfless leader people are drawn to.”

The HarbourCats return to play, following two years of pandemic restrictions, on May 31 at Wilson’s Group Stadium at RAP, against the Port Angeles Lefties. The schedule has been announced, however single game tickets and 2020/2021 ticket exchanges will not be ready to go until the HarbourCats ticketing system is updated and ready to go.  This is anticipated in another week or two.

Season tickets and 10-game flex packs are on sale. Contact chris@harbourcats.com or call the office at 778-265-0327 for details.

 

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Star player returning, NightOwls loading up on pitchers and catchers.

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One of the top performers on the first edition of the Nanaimo NightOwls is returning for a second stint.

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Versatile right-handed hitter Cody Hendriks of Cal State-Bakersfield, a dual Dutch-Canadian citizen, will be back at Serauxmen Stadium. The 6-2/195 Hendriks, who can play short/third/second in the infield and either corner outfield spot, now lives in Coquitlam and in summer of 2022 hit .275 with a team-record 13 doubles and 14 extra-base hits (one triple), along with eight stolen bases. He was second to infielder Tim Holyk (42) in hits with 39.

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Holyk, infielder Aaron Marsh, lefty Nathan Buchan, and outfielder Brandon Hupe are among those slated to return, with work still happening behind the scenes on other fan favourites from 2022.

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“Cody does so much that any coach values, and we’re glad to have him back,” said GM Jim Swanson. “He’s strong on the left side of the infield and was our hottest bat at times in 2022. He’s a key piece for CSUB and definitely has pro potential.”

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Also announced today, a total of six players:

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IF/OF Cody Hendriks, Cal State Bakersfield, sophomore, 6-2/195, Coquitlam, B.C.

C/RHP Ayden Hadley, Barton CC, freshman, 6-0/220, Langley, B.C.

LHP Aidan Sowers, Barton CC, freshman, 6-4/185, Dodge City, KS

RHP Talon Mihalinac, New Jersey Tech, freshman, 6-1/235, New Galilee, PA

LHP Blake MacMillan, Niagara, Redshirt-senior, 6-5/205, Mississauga, ON

C Matt Ward, Niagara, Redshirt-junior, 6-0/185, Mississauga, ON

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The announced 2023 roster to this point can be found HERE.

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Hadley and Sowers are teammates at Barton, a strong junior college in Kansas, and Hadley is a curious mix of a lefty bat with power, and a strike-thrower off the mound when he’s not catching or in a DH role. Sowers is a lanky lefty who has seen a jump in velo since he was with the Kansas Curve travel program, and lefties are valued with the setup of Serauxmen Stadium.

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Mihalinac is a developing power arm topping 92mph, while Niagara teammates MacMillan and Ward team as an experienced battery — MacMillan made 11 starts for the Purple Eagles in the spring of 2022, and Ward hit six home runs and batted .303 for Swift Current in the WCBL last summer.

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More signings will be announced in the coming months, as paperwork and passports are secured.

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“We’re excited about the size, experience and track record of the players filling roster spots,” said Swanson. “Adding depth, compared to last summer, is important for the pace of the WCL.”

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Victoria HarbourCats – Big-name schools sending key players to HarbourCats this summer

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday Feb 8, 2023

VICTORIA, B.C. — Texas. Washington. Oregon. Big-name schools, that lure the best recruits.

With LHP Reece Usselman of the Oregon Ducks, LHP David Shaw of the Texas Longhorns, and corner infielder Max Clark of the Washington Huskies, there will be no shortage of star college baseball players for HarbourCats fans in the summer of 2023 at Wilson’s Group Stadium at RAP.

Add in a catcher from the local collegiate Victoria Golden Tide, Lee Grey, and Victoria head coach Todd Haney is excited to see the roster grow with the season less than four months away.

David Shaw, here pitching for Rice, should be a dominant force from the left side for the HarbourCats in 2023.

“You always love finding and signing top pitching like Shaw and Usselman, and Clark is an exciting prospect,” said Haney, who will be at the helm for his third season, interrupted by two pandemic non-play summers. “Grey is also showing promise and developing under the Golden Tide coaches, important depth for what is a real grind at times in the West Coast League.”

The current, announced roster of the HarbourCats can be found HERE.

Another lefty, Langley’s Reece Ussleman gave the Canadian Junior National Team a number of quality innings in 2022.

Shaw is a monster at 6-7/205, a transfer from Rice where he made 18 appearances last spring. Usselman brings Team Canada Junior experience and isn’t exactly small at 6-3/185, a product of the Langley Blaze. He also played with White Rock (Team Canada) at the 2017 Little League World Series in Williamsport.  Clark is one of the top-rated high school players in the state of Washington, and Grey came west at the suggestion of former MLB catcher Gregg Zaun and is expected to be a key contributor for the Golden Tide in the CCBC.

Details on the players announced today:

  • LHP Reece Usselman, Oregon, incoming freshman, Langley, B.C., 6-3/185
  • LHP David Shaw, Texas, sophomore, Houston, TX, 6-7/205
  • 3B Max Clark, Washington, incoming freshman, Mercer Island, WA, 6-0/200
  • C Lee Grey, Victoria Golden Tide, freshman, Toronto, ON, 6-0/180

Oakville, Ontario’s Lee Grey will give the HarbourCats some depth at the catcher position.

The HarbourCats celebrate their 10th Anniversary in 2023 and the season kicks off with the home opener against the Kamloops NorthPaws on Friday June 2, 2023.  Single game tickets for that game and all 31 HarbourCats home games in 2023 are now on sale and can be purchased on-line through our one-and-only ticketing partner, Select Your Tickets, at harbourcats.com/tickets.  They can also be purchased at the HarbourCats office at 101-1814 Vancouver Street, or at the Select Your Tickets box office at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre.  Fans can also call 778-265-0327 to order over the phone.

Season tickets and 10-game flex packs are also now on sale.  For details on all ticketing options, including our special $10.00 Tuesdays, Forces Fridays and Save-on-Food Vouchers, please visit harbourcats.com/ticketinfo.

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The Kamloops NorthPaws Award Scholarship to Pitcher Kolby Lukinchuk

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The Kamloops NorthPaws Award Scholarship to Pitcher Kolby Lukinchuk

By Jodie Cooper

Kamloops, BC, February 2, 2023: The Kamloops NorthPaws team is delighted to announce a $500 scholarship being awarded to pitcher Kolby Lukinchuk.

Photo Taken by: Allen Douglas Graphic Created by: Fallsway Marketing & Media

The Kamloops NorthPaws are thrilled to announce that they are awarding a $500 academic scholarship to pitcher Kolby Lukinchuk, who is completing a Bachelor of Business Administration at Thompson Rivers University. The NorthPaws would like to commend Kolby for his achievements both on and off the field. His willingness to go above and beyond has made him an exemplary role model in the community.

Kolby says he decided to come and play in Kamloops because he wanted to play college baseball and wanted to work with Ray Chadwick, a former professional baseball player and a coach at Thompson Rivers University, who would help him develop and grow his chances at cracking the NorthPaws roster. One of the things that drew him to the team especially was their involvement and work ethic within the community, and the opportunities that he has received because of that. He has especially enjoyed being a role model for the young players who attend their kids’ camps.

Being able to give back to the community that has supported him is extremely important to Kolby. He loves being able to interact with people and hopes to continue his efforts in the community into this upcoming summer, especially when it comes to the development of young players, who are “the next generation”. He hopes to continue being a role model within this community going forward, and the NorthPaws scholarship will help him continue his efforts on the academic front.

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