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A championship reunion for XL Eagles fastball team

COLLEEN GREEN The Standard The XL Eagles are vying for entrance into the Scugog Sports Hall of Fame in honour of Larry Pilkey. Larry hit the winning home run that catapulted the XL Eagles to being the best Intermediate C Fastball team in Ontario.

The XL Eagles only played one season but what a season. They were the first Port Perry team to win the Ontario Amateur Softball Association’s Championship, held in Bracebridge that year.

Ken Irvine brought together two preexisting teams, Nonquon Travel and XL Gas Station, on the verge of collapse, to create baseball history. Doug Scott was recruited to coach the team. It was all so last minute that the team didn’t have uniforms. Most wore shirts from their previous team or tried to find shirts with matching colours.

In 2011 the team applied for entrance into the Scugog Hall of Fame, in honour of Larry Pilkey, who was suffering from cancer. The team was not accepted at that time. This year they are trying again, once again in honour of Larry, who has since passed away.

Last weekend the dream team reunited in Port Perry to celebrate 32 years since their winning championship game. They had hoped to do so for their 30th anniversary, but unfortunately, covid interrupted those plans.

Dorie, at Sunnybrae Golf, Port Perry, hosted the team. According to Dave Roulston, an XL team member, Dorie treated them to a first-class dinner and made their day at Sunnybrae memorable. So much so the group plans to make it an annual event, the third Saturday in July, at Sunnybrae.

While there, the team recreated their Championship photo. Amazingly all but two members were present for this historic event. Larry Pilkey (deceased) and Dave Canning, who were out of province at the time, are missing. The only change to this year’s photo was that Ken Irvine (red shirt) was able to join them.

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