Bowsman Maroons 1948–1953

Baseball flourished in the Swan River Valley after World War Two and Bowsman emerged as the pacesetter among baseball towns. Bowsman Ball Park was located in a natural amphitheatre and it had adequate seating and parking. In 1946 Bowsman purchased its first set of uniforms and later, through efforts of Dennis Ball of hockey fame, purchased uniforms from Winnipeg’s Junior Maroons. Bowsman imported talented young players from Winnipeg. Among them were Gary Blaine, Al Seymour, Aggie Kukulowicz, and Al Jacques.

From 1952 to 1955 the Manitoba-Saskatchewan League operated with Dauphin, Gilbert Plains, Grandview, Roblin, Yorkton, and Kamsack (with a team imported from Sequoia State College in California). In 1953 Bowsman imported three Negro stars, Lenard Pigg, Gene “Tex” Conley, and Percy Howard.

With a good blend of local talent and imports, Bowsman excelled in league play and became prominent at tournaments in Indian Head, Foam Lake, Yorkton, Melville, Kamsack, Delisle, Canora and other places. Bowsman hosted the Muskogee Cardinals, the Ligon All-Stars, Satchel Paige’s touring team, Notre Dame Hounds,and the Regina Caps (who brought in portable lights). Perhaps 2000 fans would pack the hillsides. Later, Bowsman joined the Polar League with Flin Flon, Creighton, The Pas, Thompson. Baseball was a vital part of the Bowsman community during the post-WWII era.

Eden Baseball Team 1949–1954

In the early 1940’s, Eden schoolteacher W.J. McLaughlin taught the fundamentals of baseball to a group of farm boys and a team developed that became a local dynasty. The Eden team became well known on the sports day circuit in the 40s, and the formation of the Neepawa and District League in 1950 gave them an opportunity to show off their skills for the next twenty years. They won five league championships, in 1950, 1953, 1958, 1961, 1966. The 1950 team featured renowned players such as Manitoba Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Mel McGorman, Mel’s brothers Gordon and Claire, Roy Kilburn, Merv Chorneyko, Russ Ivey, Gordon Lang, Harry Smithson, George Wilkinson, Harold McFadyen, Doug Birch, John Jackson, and Bill Jackson.

In tournament play, Eden was especially tough at home. They won their own tournament six times during the 1950’s. They also performed very well at Neepawa tournaments, appearing in seven finals, from 1948-1965, and winning two of them.

Transcona Atomics 1963-1968

Transcona dominated the Winnipeg Senior Baseball League in the mid 1960’s. They were finalists in 1963, then won five straight titles. The Atomics won the provincila senior title in 1964, 1965 (co-winners with St. Lazarre Athletics), 1966, 1968, abd lost in provincial finals in 1967. In 1969, the Atomics represented Manitoba in Halifax at the first Canada Summer Games. Manager Alf Sobko’s Atomics were blessed with great pitching, especially from Bob Hunter, Terry Moore, and Bob Audette, played great defense, and had a superb group of hitters.

Nelson Woods

Nelson Woods was a good outfielder in 1940s and 1950s, and played on district junior team in 1948 which won Fort Qu’Appelle (Saskatchewan) tournament over Regina, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Notre Dame. Nelson coached both juvenile and midget teams to Western Canada titles in mid-1960s. He also umpired for twelve years in MSBL, and was in the Canadian senior championship in 1970. Nelson was also prominent in hockey and in curling, and in 1980 he won silver at Canadian Senior Curling Championships.Served as councillor & mayor of Hamiota 1969-73 and was Reeve of the RM of Hamiota 1989-92

Russ Smith

Russ Smith was an excellent outfielder/first baseman with amazing speed whose average over fifteen year career ranged from .300 to .452. Smith played with teams in Selkirk, Radville (Saskatchewan), Toronto, Maher, and St. Boniface. Russ also played fastball with Flin Flon and the Kiewels in Winnipeg. Hockey and track were also some of Russ`s favorite activities. Russ spent fifteen years coaching baseball and hockey at community club levels.