The National Baseball Team of Russia returns to Grand Forks after playing in the World Baseball Challenge in 2002.
The Russian National Team achieved Silver in the 2001 European Championships in Germany. They now have a new generation team, which is aiming to show its best in the 2012 European Championship. They will spend the next 2 years preparing for this goal. The 1st preparation stage is for the team to participate in the Prague Baseball Week, July 12-18 in the Czech Republic. In addition, the Russian National Championships are going on every weekend where the club teams compete against each other and the National team members get a lot of experience within their own clubs. By the end of August, the National Team plans to be at its best performance of the season to show off in the Grand Forks International Tournament. The National Baseball Team of Russia is very excited about taking part in this very competitive event.
Thurston County Senators
The Thurston County Senators (formerly the Auburn A’s) is the Tournament Team that consist of current members of the Puget Sound Collegiate League (PSCL). As the representative of the PSCL the Senators will compete in various tournaments through out Northern America. The roster is primarily NW junior college players. The PSCL has produced numerous professional players. The highest player picked was Christian Scholl in the 8th round by the Angels and most recent was Jake Shadle in the 2010 draft by the Giants.
Lewiston Paffile Truckers
Can you say national champions sixteen times? The Lewis-Clark State Warriors made it number 16 in the last 25 seasons in 2008, when they defeated Lee University from Tennessee 8-3 in the title game. The Truckers, who have one the GFI seven times, will again be led by acclaimed head coach Ed Cheff. They will be trying to make GFI history by being the only team to win eight titles, three in a row!
Baseball Canada 2008 – Senior Men National Champions
Victoria Mavericks Baseball Association and their tournament team (the ‘Victoria Mavericks’) would like to express their sincere thanks and appreciation to the G.F.I. Tournament Organizing Committee for inviting the Mavericks to their 30th Annual Grand Forks International Baseball Tournament.
The Victoria Mavericks (Baseball Canada’s 2008 Senior Men ‘National Champions’) are very honoured, humbled and inspired to be a part of this prestigious tournament as they will be playing to represent their Association well and to hopefully raise funds for a new ballpark at the current ‘Mavericks Field’ site (in Victoria, B.C.).
San Diego Stars
The Stars will be back to Grand Forks in 2010! “The Stars come out at night!” This fine team from San Diego uses that as a team motto and they have certainly enjoyed some shining moments at the GFI. The San Diego Stars have been to the GFI 13 times, made it to the final six times, and taken the prize twice, in 2004 and 2006. Mickey and his Stars will look to winning another title, making it three in 30 tournaments.
Six time GFI champions and one of the outstanding semi-pro teams in the United States; the Studs will once again take aim at another Grand Forks trophy. Over the years the Studs have showcased some very special talent in their lineup. Two examples in recent years are Brent Lillibridge and Tim Lincecum. Lincecum, who was drafted number 10 overall in 2006 year’s major league draft by San Francisco Giants, received the 2006 Golden Spikes Award, which goes to the top amateur player in the United States.
Trail, the honorary host to the tournament as the closest local team, is back at the GFI after a year away while at the Canadian National Championship in Dartmouth Nova Scotia. The AM Ford Orioles are the host of the 2010 BC Provincial Championship and hope to add to their solid core of locals with some of the top talent from around the province. The Orioles are playing a full summer of games leading up to the Provincial Championship and the GFI and should be ready for a week of exciting baseball. Several former Orioles have been drafted and played professional ball led by current New York Met Jason Bay. Trail has made the playoff round several times with a 4th place finish at the 2003 GFI and hope to bring out a full contingent of fans to see who this year’s champion will be.
Can you say national champions sixteen times? The Lewis-Clark State Warriors made it number 16 in the last 25 seasons in 2008, when they defeated Lee University from Tennessee 8-3 in the title game.
The Truckers will again be led by acclaimed head coach Ed Cheff, who will look to lead the always competitive Truckers to GFI glory once again.
The Idaho Warriors and the Lewiston Truckers are formed from the full roster of Lewis Clark State. They split their squad to form two teams at the GFI when it has been necessary.
The Kelowna Jays enter the Pacific International League in 2010 and look to challenge the league with a young team. The 2010 Jays feature some great talent from BC. As a competitive summer program the Jays are mainly college and ex-college players with a couple of Ex-Pro’s mixed in. Most of our players come from Junior college’s, NAIA programs and largely the Okanagan College Baseball program in Kelowna. In the 2009 season the club finished with a (30-30) record, 2008 (46-14), and 2007 (40-20). 2009 Canadian Junior National Team MVP Darren Kolk joins the club and adds some explosive ability to the team. Other notables; Kelowna product, Dawson Newman, (FR, LHP, Cowley County CC), Ashton Florko (Sr, LHP, UBC), Jake Chapman (Fr, C, Panola CC), Kyle Hart (Fr, RHP, U of Redlands).
The Kelowna Jays host the annual Canada Day Baseball Blast on July long weekend and have recently added 4 more teams to the lineup to make it now a 16 team tournament. Bill Bayne- President, Geoff White- Field Manager, Jared Johnson- Coach For more information visit www.kelownajays.com
Kamloops Sun Devils
The Kamloops Sun Devils are pleased to have the opportunity to play in the GFI again this year. They hope to better their 6th place finish at the 2009 GFI. The team is made up mostly of players that have played, or are playing for the Thompson Rivers University Wolfpack. This team plays in the Canadian Collegiate Baseball League, winning the 2009 championship. The Sun Devils are pleased to have the Thompson Rivers head coach, Ray Chadwick looking after the team again, now in his 7th year. Under his direction, many players have excelled and gone on to play at higher levels all over the world.
Grand Forks Blues
The Grand Forks Blues started out 3 years ago playing in the West Kootenay XBL league. The team started by Tom Starchuk, Sam Ross and Kenny Starchuk has had 3 good season’s and this year topped off with a showing at the Senior Men’s Provincials in Trail. The opportunity for the team to participate in the G.F.I is a major goal for some of the more senior guys and long time Grand Forks’ residents.
The Grand Forks Blues will be bringing a solid core group of local players such as Tom Starchuk, Kenny Starchuk, Sam Ross, Sean Dunlop, Lance Federico and Jordan Konkin to the G.F.I this year. As well as a good group of supporting local players the likes of Adam Sofonoff, Ryan Grant, Grant Mills and Paul Mason. They even have a couple of young up and comers from the south of the border in Danville, Tanner Someday and Chris Browning. The Blues will be bringing in some pitching talent from the lower mainland and hope to surprise some teams in the G.F.I.
The Thunderbirds had another strong season in 2010 finishing the season with a 41-13 record. Post season saw the Birds capture their second consecutive NAIA West Regional championship and advance to 2nd stage qualifying for the NAIA World Series. The Birds came up 1 game short of that goal losing in the final game of the sectional championship. Key returners include all region pitcher Sheldon McDonald, RHP’s Brandon Kaye and Eric Brown who will be expected to lead the staff this year. Sean Pisarski, Blake Carruthers, Keaton Briscoe and Andrew Firth will be looked upon to lead the offense for the Thunderbirds. UBC is lead by Vernon native and NAIA West coach of the year Terry McKaig who is entering his 14th year at the helm of the Birds. The Birds are excited to be a part of the line up of teams celebrating 30 years of the GFI.