In the 1990’s Powerline Baseball League fans would receive their baseball news from a local sports writer simply known as Scoop. The stories would appear in the Tofield Mercury and be primarily focused on the hometown Tofield Lakers, featuring in-depth breakdowns of league games and even tournaments. It was the PBLs lifeline to the community pre-internet and pre-social media with the paper reaching readers throughout the County of Beaver.
Here is a story in the July 7, 1992 edition of the Tofield Mercury which captured the month of June for the Tofield Lakers. The short and to the point statement of facts and some of the language used is entertaining. It is a good snapshot of the league in the early 1990s. Scoop mentions the Main Street signage used in town to notify baseball fans about upcoming Laker games, home runs were a plenty with aluminum bats and Kenny Parent always had a rubber arm. It is also interesting to see how umpires were recognized in the updates as well. It was a different time in the PBL when one day an ump is calling the game on the bases and on the weekend pitching for you in a tournament.
Below is Scoop’s submission in its entirety. I kept the charm of the grammar and spelling as it was written.
Laker Ball highlights
July 7, 1992 – Tofield Mercury
What has happened with the Tofield Lakers in the Powerline Baseball league the past few weeks you wonder?
First a re-cap of league games to date.
Their second home game of the season on June 9 found the Lakers in a tight contest against the Holden Blue Jays.
Holden seemed to have the upper hand until Jim Warner, in the bottom of the third inning, scored from second base on an error. This sparked a powerful Laker “rally” including a triple by Allan Miskew and RBI by Randy Cox for the go-ahead run in this inning.
Holden finally shut the Laker offence down. Allan Miskew pitched a winner with the Laker’s defence holding the Holden Blue Jays scoreless through the last four innings.
Final score read 7-6 in Tofield’s favor.
Game 3 of this league was umped by Pat Donnan (home plate) and Dave Carlson (bases). Dave Bouma joined the Laker lineup for his first game of the 1992 season.
Game 4, Tofield vs Bardo in Bardo was cancelled because of Bardo’s Sports Day tournament scheduled for June 13.
Instead game 4 found Ryley visiting Tofield June 16 at the Tofield fairgrounds.
Allan Miskew was the starting pitcher holding Ryley’s first two bats scoreless.
Bottom of the second inning with bases loaded the Lakers walked in their first run of the game. Lakers, unable to capitalize on loaded bases in the second inning, discovered Ryley turning up the burner with five runs crossing home plate in the third inning, and one more in the fourth.
Ken Parent stepped in to pitch the last three innings.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Dave Bouma his first home run of 1992. When the inning’s dust settled, Tofield had chalked up two runs.
Don Henriksen, in the bottom of the seventh inning hit a RBI bringing a run in — not enough to catch the Rebels.
Lakers experienced their first loss of the season 6-4.
Umpires for this game included Dave Carlson (home base) and Robert Lyslo (bases).
The game initially scheduled June 4 was played June 19 in Ryley with Tofield Lakers facing Ryley Rebels for the second time in one week.
The Laker bat ruled this game.
Don Henriksen smacked a double in the first inning with Allan Miskew brining him home on an error for the first run on the books with one run scored by Tofield in the second inning.
All was quiet until the fourth inning. Bottom of the fourth was Ryley’s inning brining in three runs to go ahead 3-2.
Back, back…way back! Don Henriksen pounded a home run in the fifth inning brining in both the tying and go-ahead runs. Allan Miskew smacked a solo home run, sending the Lakers ahead 5-3.
Ken Parent joined the home run club in the top of the sixth with Pat Kallal doubling for a RBI.
Ken Parent pitched six scoreless innings.
Ryley counting only in the fourth inning, for a Laker win of 8-3.
June 23 Tofield soundly defeated Bardo Athletics 19-7. Dan Lyle was credited with the win.
Completion of three innings of ball found a tied game.
Tofield then recovered three runs in the top of the fourth. Bardo answered with one run making the score 6-4.
Laker bats came alive racking up seven runs in the fifth inning followed by six more runs in the sixth and final inning.
The seventh league game scheduled for June 25 was cancelled against Ryley due to a number of injuries on the Tofield Lakers restained during Ryley Sports Day tournament. A spectacular crash over a fly ball left Cy Smith with a cracked rib.
The Tofield Lakers have participated in three baseball tournaments; Bardo, Ryley and Holden Sports Day.
Bardo Sports Day, June 19 saw Tofield defeat Holden 6-1 in the opening game. Holden scored their only run in the first inning. Ken Parent launched a home run in the bottom of the first inning brining two runs home. Top of the fourth found bases loaded for Holden. Three consecutive outs pitched by Ken Parent with no runs scored. A “hidden ball” play in the fifth inning, between second base and the Lakers pitcher resulted in Holden’s third out again no runs scored on loaded bases. Lakers rallied in the sixth inning to bring in four runs sealing their victory. Greg Litwin hit his first RBI of the season.
The A-final, Bardo found Tofield pitted against Ryley. After three complete innings of ball it was a tie game. Dave Carlson pitched the first four and half innings leaving a tie game to Randy Cox to finish. Ryley was brutal in the fifth inning scoring seven runs with a fence clearing attempt to field a high fly ball by outfielder Dan Lyle. Top of the sixth found Tofield scoring four runs, three on a triple by Dave Bouma. Ryley answered with two more runs against Dan Lyle pitching the final bat for Ryley. Final score – Ryley, 11 and Tofield, 6.
June 20, Tofield lost the opening game of Ryley Sports Day against Holden, 6-2. It was a steading game with runs scored in all innings but the second and fourth. Both RBIs for the Lakers were manufactured by Allan Miskew. Dave Carlson was the early morning pitcher.
Ryley’s B-final sported Tofield against Bardo with Randy Cox as Laker pitcher.
Bardo started out on top with four runs in by the second inning. Single run RBIs hit by Randy Cox and Ken Parent made it 4-2.
A long catch by Laker fielder Pat Kallal resulted in a sharp double play keeping Bardo scoreless in the third inning.
The fourth found both teams scoring three runs each creating a 8-7 ball game in favor of Bardo.
Lakers changed pitchers brining in Dan Lyle who held Bardo to one run.
Bottom of the fifth finished the game with Tofield scoring nine runs including two-run RBIs by Neil Anderson and Greg Litwin respectively.
Tofield defeated Bardo 16-9 winning the B-final.
June 27 and 28, a two-day baseball tournament hosted by the Holden Blue Jays had Tofield playing the opening game Saturday morning against Daysland.
Tofield’s first bat against extremely strong wind conditions saw four RBIs. One each credited to Ken Parent, Dan Lyle, Neil Anderson and Dave Carlson.
Daysland replied scoring one run.
In the third inning, both teams matched two runs.
Tofield jumped on their bats top of the fourth with Don Henriksen hitting a single run RBI and Ken Parent cleaning up with a two-run RBI.
The game was called after five complete innings. Tofield, 11 and Daysland, 3.
Pitcher for the Lakers was Ken Parent.
June 28, Tofield met with Holden for their second game in the tournament.
First inning saw Ken Parent crack a double for an RBI putting Tofield ahead 2-1.
Lakers rallied in the third inning with steady bats bringing in four RBIs. Hitters included Dan Lyle, Dave Bouma, Greg Litwin and Brian Schulze with a nice bounce to the fence.
Tofield scored twice more with an RBI by Don Henriksen in the fourth and one run crossing home plate in the sixth inning.
Dave Carlson pitched four and a half innings for the win with Ken Parent closing the six inning game for the save.
Tofield, 8 and Holden, 5 was the final tally in the sun.
Sunday’s A-final was trouble for the Lakers matched against Heisler.
The Lakers couldn’t capitalize on their bats. Heisler scored three runs in the first inning.
Tofield loaded the bases in the second, but couldn’t find a way home.
Halfway through the third inning Allan Miskew passed the pitcher’s ball to Dan Lyle. Heisler totalled six runs.
Finally scoring one run in the fourth, their first and last, the game was called after Tofield’s unsuccessful fifth inning bat.
The sun set on a 9-1 final for Heisler.
There were two more makeup games – one against Ryley and the second with Bardo before this Powerline league is completed, followed by the playoffs.
If Tofield defeats Ryley they will maintain their first place standing.
Neither game has been scheduled at this time.
Watch Main Street corner for more Laker news.
Thanks to the umpire and loyal fans who keep this team up and ready!
Let’s do it Laker’s!!