Every year over 40,000 Canadian boys and girls, aged 5-18, are registered in Little League programs across the country. Being involved in Little League is not only about winning games, but winning in the game of life building character, courage and loyalty in its players. The program is designed to develop superior citizens rather than superior athletes.
Little League Canada is divided into five Regions: Ontario, Quebec, the Maritimes, the Prairies, and BC. Worldwide, the number of kids playing Little League ball swells to 3 million, in over 100 countries.
At the end of the regular season, each league holds try-outs for All Star teams. Each District holds its championship during the second week of July, consisting of All Star teams from each league. Winners of District Championships move on to represent their Districts at Provincials/ Regionals.
The Canadian Region of Little League was formed in 1958 and until 1965 consisted only of teams from Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes. The first ever Canadian title was won by Valleyfield LL (Quebec), in 1958.
With 20 Canadian titles, BC holds the record for most titles won, followed by Quebec with 13 Canadian Championships. All 20 BC teams that have won Canadian Championships have competed in the Little League World Series to represent Canada.
Little Mountain Little League was the first BC team to advance to the LLWS in 1953, having won Western Regional Championship. More recently, Little Mountain won the Canadian Championship in 2010 in Ancaster, Ontario; making the Little Mountaineers only the third team ever from the city of Vancouver to advance to the LLWS.
The closest any Canadian team has come to winning the Little League World Series was in 1965 when Stoney Creek Little League (Ontario) was defeated by Windsor Locks, CT, with a score of 3-1 in the final game of the Little League World Series.
This year, six teams of 11 and 12 year olds from across Canada will compete for the National title. Represented Regions will include: Ontario, Quebec, BC, the Maritimes, and the Prairies. The sixth team will be the host team (D5’s Mount Seymour).
And what keeps these boys swinging is their chance to win the Canadian Championships and playing in the Little League World Series in Williamsport, PA! Good-luck to all the participating teams this summer, and keep up the great team spirit!
For more information, game schedules and scores, visit: www.vancouver2011.ca/