from Vince Mullin
Chepstow Aces Celebrate 50 Years of Fast Pitch
Mens Fast Pitch Softball has been a mainstay of the Village of Chepstow since 1968.
Players past and present are coming to the village to celebrate on Sunday Aug 5.
The Aces reunion will be part of the Chepstow homecoming activities which will go from Friday August 3 to Monday August 6.
The Aces began in 1968 competing in the Intermediate division of the Western Ontario Athletic Association at the old ball park which is now the school grounds.
The first year was a tough one for the Aces, but every game played made them better.
The team joined the Walkerton District Softball League in 1969.
They played against local teams from Walkerton, Formosa, Cargill, Pinkerton, and Mildmay.
Sunday afternoon games were always popular, and it wasn’t uncommon to see the stands full of cheering spectators. The competition was always close and with the teams being near to one another, that added a friendly rivalry.
In 1975, Chepstow moved back to the WOAA and competed successfully, capturing the Intermediate A, and 12 WOAA Grand championships. Some of the long time rivals in the league were Ripley, Lucknow, Clifford, Chesley, Tara, Port Elgin, Milverton, Moorefield, Fullerton, Teeswater, Walkerton, St. Mary’s and Mount Forest. The Aces continued to compete as a bye team in the WOAA after joining the Bluewater League.
In 1982, The Aces joined the Bluewater League with several of their WOAA counterparts. Some of the other teams that came into the league included Meaford, Owen Sound, Wiarton, Southampton, Durham, Belmore, Palmerston, and Wroxeter.
The Red, White and Navy won the Bluewater Championship 8 times, with the last one being in 2011. The Aces would have moved to the Lion’s Park in Chepstow in the early 80’s as well.
Chepstow captured Provincial silver in 1987, and Provincial gold in 1988 and 1992 in the Intermediate classification.
The Aces played in many tournaments over the years. They competed in Chepstow, Goderich, Durham, Brussels, Milverton, Clifford, Wroxeter, Exeter, Markdale and Owen Sound.
Always a favourite match up in the Chepstow tourney was the Tien Ho Inn team from Kitchener.
Popular annual games for Chepstow were with the Fritz’s, who would field a team comprised of the whole family.
The Aces have been blessed with many ballplayers, coaches, scorekeepers and ball boys and girls over the course of 50 years.
According to latest numbers, there has been 199 to wear the Chepstow uniform. There are 21 who are deceased.
The current Aces are a very solid team, with potential for being there for years to come.
Thanks to all sponsors and fans who have supported the team over the years, and hope you will join in celebrating with the Aces this Aug. 5. Activities begin with future Aces (T-ball) playing at 1 o’clock with the Aces playing at 2.
Fast Pitch, Friends and Fun since 1968.