Brace For Impact FC UWS, First Game May 29th

The first signing of the St. Albert Soccer Association as they formed the Impact FC UWS was Calgary Foothills WFC award winning coach Troye Flannery. One of the first player signings of the Impact WFC was 2019 Foothills player Tanya Boychuk. It would seem that opening the 2021 season schedule would be the only fitting way to do so and the United Women’s Soccer league did not disappoint!

Saturday May 29th – Home Game vs Calgary Foothills WFC, 2 PM

With “Battle of Alberta” copyrighted by the hockey team, FC Edmonton vs Cavalry FC took on the name of “Al Classico“. The women’s version will logically take on the moniker of “Al Classica”.

Home games will be played at Riel Recreation Park at 61 Riel Drive.

Away Games – Saturday June 5th at Santa Clarita Heat, Sunday June 6th at Internacional

The Heat narrowly missed the UWS playoffs finishing third place in Western Conference. Internacional, based in Santa Ana, California, are also in their inaugural season in the league.

All away games will be streamed live on CFN Media’s YouTube Channel.

Home Games – Sunday June 13th vs Santa Clarita Heat 6 PM, Sunday June 25th vs Kongo FC 6 PM

The Heat will be the first team the Impact WFC will play in a rematch against. The Utah based Kongo FC are also expansion sistren.

Home games will be played at Riel Recreation Park at 61 Riel Drive.

Away Game – Saturday July 3rd vs Foothills WFC

The “Al Classica” travels south for the first time. The first true opportunity for the Impact Supporters Group to bring their “A game” on the road. If you have never supported your team in a road venue, you are missing out on one of the most entertaining aspects of fandom.

All away games will be streamed live on CFN Media’s YouTube Channel.

Home Game – Sunday July 11th vs Internacional 2 PM

The final regular season home game for the Impact WFC.

Home games will be played at Riel Recreation Park at 61 Riel Drive.

Away Game – Saturday July 17th at Kongo FC

The final regular season game for the Impact WFC and UWS as a league. National Championships are scheduled for July 23rd-July 25th.

All away games will be streamed live on CFN Media’s YouTube Channel.

The “living in a pandemic” warning – all dates and times are subject to change.

Edmonton Riverhawks Announce Inaugural Manager and Pitching Coach

“The Edmonton Riverhawks are proud to announce Kelly Stinnett as the first manager of the West Coast League baseball team. Stinnett is a retired (MLB) catcher who played all or parts of 14 seasons in the majors.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the Edmonton Riverhawks and coming to such a prestigious league,” says Stinnett. “This is one of the premier summer college leagues in North America.”

The Riverhawks also announced they’ve signed local product Ethan Elias as pitching coach….Elias also has a wealth of National Team experience in Canada. He is currently the Head Coach of the Edmonton Collegiate Baseball Club (ECBC Trappers) as well as coaching at the Absolute Human Performance skills development organization.

The Riverhawks are ready to take flight as soon as they get a green light to play ball. The West Coast League announced last week there will be two divisions this year, a Canadian and American division. At this point in time, Kelly Stinnett has every intention of coming north this summer to make his debut coaching the Riverhawks in the West Coast League.”

The above statements are all taken from the Edmonton Riverhawks March 31st press release announcing the pieces to their inaugural coaching staff. Having previously interviewed Coach Elias of the ECBC Trappers, I reached out to him for a quick comment on the big announcement:

“Very excited for the opportunity and it will be very fun to have baseball in the river valley again”

Need to learn more about the Riverhawks?

From our own Ethan Bayduza’s article “Edmonton, welcome to the West Coast League

  • The West Coast League, just like the Western Canadian Baseball League (Edmonton Prospects), is a wood-bat summer collegiate league. The college baseball season ends in spring, so players need somewhere to play during the summer months. You will see college-age players from Canada and the United States compete.

Also from Ethan:

  • You can study up on a couple of American players like Chase Luttrell and Alex Pimentel HERE. You can learn about Canadian signings such as Michael Brisson and Shaun Atamanchuk HERE.

Of course be sure to bookmark the Riverhawks website, Facebook and Twitter.

Dear pandemic, please them play.

 

Jump On The Brewer Bandwagon

Edmonton is without a Major League Baseball team, and that breaks my heart. I am a passionate baseball fan and will watch any game at any level. Major League Baseball is the best of the best. I grew up in Milwaukee and have been watching the Milwaukee Brewers since the late 70s. I would like to share my passion and offer a seat on the Brewer Bandwagon.

History

The Brewers started just 800 miles from Edmonton as the Seattle Pilots in 1969. After finishing 64-98 and drawing just 677,944 fans, the team moved to Milwaukee and became the Brewers just before the 1970 season.

Seattle Times archive/TNS

The team found their first success in 1978, when they finally finished above .500. The Brew Crew would continue their success for the next five seasons. They got their first taste of the playoffs in 1981, when they lost the to New York Yankees in the ALDS three games to two. The following season, they made their only World Series appearance, losing to the St. Louis Cardinals four games to three.

Those playoff teams were led by a group of blue collar type players. Hall of Famers Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, Rollie Fingers, and Ted Simmons formed the core of the team. Other fan favorites, such as Gorman Thomas, Jim Gantner, Charlie Moore, Cecil Cooper, Ben Oglivie, and Pete Vukovich added personality and brought the fun to the stadium.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Files

The Brewers were up and down for the next decade, then it was all downhill after the 1992 season. They went 13 seasons with a losing record, and even moved from the American League to the National League in 1998. Then a new group of Brewers came up and brought success back to Milwaukee.

Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder, J.J. Hardy, Bill Hall, Rickie Weeks, Corey Hart, Craig Counsell, and Ben Sheets led the way to a Wild Card spot. They lost to the Phillies in the NLDS three games to one.

Braun, Fielder, and Weeks were joined in 2011 by Jonathan Lucroy and Casey McGehee in 2011 as they won their division for the first time since 1982. They won the ALDS, but the Cardinals once again ended the Brewer season, this time in the NLCS.

Morry Gash/Associated Press

The Brewers struggled for a couple of years and went through a rebuild. They started to reap the benefits of the rebuild in 2017 when they finished above .500 again. They won the division in 2018 and made it to the NLCS again, losing to the Los Angeles Dodgers in seven games.

The Brewers earned a Wild Card spot in each of the next two seasons, giving them three straight playoff appearances for the first time in franchise history.

Current Team

The Brewers have a strong team this year, even though they did not perform well in 2020. They have a good mix of veterans and younger players and a good mix of offense and defense. Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain, Jackie Bradley, Jr., and Kolton Wong are all Gold Glove winners, while Yelich is also a Silver Slugger.

The left side of the infield will be primarily manned by three players. Luis Urias will play shortstop, Travis Shaw will play third base, and Orlando Arcia will see time at both positions. Urias and Arcia are slick fielders, but Arcia’s bat has not come around yet. Shaw saw success in Milwaukee in 2017 and 2018, but had a disastrous 2019 season at the plate. The Brewers are hoping that Shaw can return to his 2018 self.

The right side of the infield is bolstered by the addition of Wong. Keston Hiura debuted in 2019 and has hit 32 home runs in 143 games, but had issues making an accurate throw from second base. Wong’s arrival allows the Brewers move Hiura to first base, where his arm is no longer a liability and his bat will still be effective.

MLB.com

The outfield is one of the best defensive outfields in baseball. Yelich should be an MVP candidate again after a down year in 2020. Cain should be in top form after sitting out in 2020 and could be a Gold Glover again. Bradley can play both center and right and brings yet another Gold Glove to the Brewer outfield. Avasail Garcia is a strong defender in his own right and should hit around 20 home runs this year.

AP Photo/Ashley Landis

The pitching staff is quietly one of the best in the league. Brandon Woodruff, Corbin Burnes, Adrian Houser, and Freddy Peralta are all under 30 and rising stars. Lefty Brett Anderson brings the experience to the rotation. The bullpen boasts the unhittable Josh Hader and the 2020 NL Rookie of the Year Devon Williams.

Bottom Line

The Brewers have not won a championship and have only made one World Series appearance. However, they have a history of fun players and a blue collar playing style. The current team is no different. Milwaukee fans are loyal and enthusiastic and adore players that give their all. It’s a small market, but the passion is undeniable.

Kenny Yoo/Milwaukee Brewers

To the baseball fans in Edmonton, I invite you to join the True Blue Brew Crew. I will save you a seat on the bandwagon, but beware. Once you hop on, you may not want to hop off. Don’t worry, there’s plenty of beer, brats, and cheese curds for everyone!