Celebrate Great Falls will host the second annual Varsity versus Alumni baseball game Sunday, June 2.
Photo by Alex McVeigh.
On Sunday, June 2 past and present members of the Langley High School baseball team will face off in the second annual Langley Varsity versus Alumni Baseball game. Last year the alumni won the inaugural game by a single run.
“We had a lot of fun last year, it was good seeing a lot of the recent grads back on the diamond,” said Kevin Healy, Langley’s varsity baseball coach. “We have a pretty active alumni program, which includes two of them on our current coaching staff, and we like to keep them active, to keep a community feel among those who have played baseball here.”
The game, conceived last year by Celebrate Great Falls, pits alumni from any year against the current varsity team. Last year’s alumni team featured Vic Price, Langley Class of 1969, who spent five years playing baseball in the majors, as well as many recent graduates.
“It was fun coming back to play with the people you grew up with, it brought back memories of some good experiences,” said Chaz Ayoub, who graduated in 2007 and attended James Madison University.
Ayoub’s classmate Tommy Tysse, who attended Williams College, said the game was a good opportunity to get back on the field.
“It had been a while since I was out there, it felt good to be playing again,” he said. “I’m not sure if I’ll be able to play this year, but I’m definitely considering it.”
Last year’s alumni team won 10-9 in a close game, and will have some new members, courtesy of last year’s graduating class.
“It should be fun to play against Langley Varsity for once, I’m looking forward to getting a new perspective,” said David Paul, a recent graduate who now attends Vanderbilt University. “We didn’t like losing last year, so I know the team will be fired up.”
The Langley program has also appealed to many families that were involved, even ones whose children are far away at college. Mark Brown’s son Alex graduated from Langley in 2009, and though Alex is at the University of Texas, Mark Brown still goes to games when he can.
“I love the program, and I think my son got a lot out of his time here,” said Brown, who also played high school and college baseball. “The bonds people form in this program are ones they seem to want to continue, which speaks highly about the community built by these coaches and parents.”
Healy said the team and school is making a concerted effort to reach out to more alumni. They hosted an alumni night at their Friday, May 3 game against James Madison High School, welcoming back former players and families from across the years.
“We’ve been making a more concerted effort to get people out over the last few years, to build up more of a network,” Healy said. “I’d like to see some of the old coaches come back as well.”
This year’s alumni-varsity game will be at Nike Field from 2 to 5 p.m., and the first of the annual summer concert series, Concerts on the Green, will kick off at the Great Falls Village Centre at 6 p.m.