1973 Saskatoon Blue Angels Softball Team

Accomplishments: Softball Gold Medallists, Jeux Canada Games, 1973.

In 1972, a group of young female softball players came together under the guidance of Frank O’Donnell and Andy Messner and achieved immediate success by winning the Women’s Division II Championship in the Saskatoon Softball League and finishing first in the inaugural Saskatchewan Games and the 1972 Junior Provincial Championship.

The Blue Angles qualified as the Saskatchewan representative for the 1973 Canada Summer Games being held in Burnaby, British Columbia.  The Angles were the only team at these championships that was made up of players from only one team – all the other provinces had selected all-star teams or teams bolstered with pick-ups from other teams in their province to represent them.

The tournament consisted of two pools of teams with the first and second place finishers from each pool moving on to the medal round.  The Saskatoon team finished with a 3-2 record in their pool, which was good enough for second place.  In their semi-final game against Alberta, the Blue Angels managed to triumph by a 7-5 score.  They met the host team from British Columbia in the gold medal match.  Following a Marvel O’Donnell walk, a single by Carol Bertsch, a couple of run-scoring singles by Carol Rayburn and Pat Harrison in the sixth inning, the Blue Angels scored a 6-4 triumph and became the winners of the women’s softball gold medal at the 1973 Canada Summer Games.

In 1973, following their impressive victory, the team received the Saskatoon Board of Trade Achievement Award, the City of Saskatoon Award of Merit, and the province of Saskatchewan Achievement Award.  In 1993, the team was inducted into the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame.

Left to Right:

Front Row: Marvel O’Donnell, Chris Gervais, Terry Nelson, Irene Glazier, Kathy Messner, Bev Mazurkewich, Leila Berg, Bonnie Skeoch.

2nd Row: Andy Messner (assistant coach), Lynne Fuller, Ann Tkachuk, Sherry Wright, Carol Bertsch, Pat Harrison, Debbie Dionne, Carol Rayburn, Frank O’Donnell (coach).