Sault College Athletics announced today that the Cougars will join the Ontario Colleges Athletics Association (OCAA) Men’s Baseball League and pursue club Women’s Softball next September.
After discussions with Soo Minor Baseball Association (SMBA) over the last few years, spearheaded by Steve McLeod of Sault College, the Athletics Department was able to create a partnership with SMBA to see post-secondary baseball and softball established in Sault Ste. Marie. The two new teams will play home games at Sinclair Yards.
“I am thrilled to be able to add Men’s Baseball and Women’s Softball to our compliment of varsity and club sports at Sault College,” said Paul Orazietti, Sault College’s Manager of Athletics. “We were very deliberate in choosing to make the jump into baseball and we believe it is critical that we are competitive with other colleges in the OCAA when it comes to sport. The Black Sox track record of success and the ability to align ourselves with their coaching and infrastructure made this proposition highly attractive to us.”
The Soo Minor Baseball Association and Black Sox organization have won 18 provincial championships and have sent over 35 players to post-secondary baseball at all levels from the NCAA to Usports. Sault College is looking to tap into this wealth of local athletic talent.
“We are extremely excited to be partnering with Sault College to usher in college baseball to our community in 2022,” said Mike Lebel, president of Soo Minor Baseball Association. “This will provide another opportunity for our graduating players to play baseball at the post-secondary level while pursuing a college education. We look forward to working with the Sault College Athletic Department to make this a sustainable and thriving program for years to come.”
In the last three years, Sault College has introduced three new varsity teams to its athletics programs including men’s and women’s soccer and now men’s baseball.
“We want students to know that when they choose Sault College for their post-secondary experience, they will not only receive a top-rated college education in Ontario, but also have the opportunity to pursue their sports passion and perhaps earn a scholarship or play for a national championship at the same time. We are making steady progress towards our goal of having one of the top varsity programs in our province and I have no doubt that baseball and club softball will bolster this objective,” stated Orazietti.
Baseball will join the six varsity teams that the College currently offers including:
ACHA Division 2 Men’s & Women’s Hockey
OCAA Men’s & Women’s Soccer
Adding baseball and club softball to Sault College gives students more opportunities to develop a stronger relationship with other students and community organizations as college athletics starts to emerge from the isolation of the pandemic. The Sault College Cougar Athletics Department is hopeful that its new baseball and softball programs will promote a sense of school and civic pride and create an amazing student experience at Sault College.
Sault College Athletics will begin its search for coaches for the two teams in the next few weeks with recruitment to begin shortly thereafter. Student athletes can expect tryouts to begin in spring 2022.