In the 1960s baseball was the dominant team sport of summer. Most towns had a senior baseball team that participated in a local league and competed for prize money at sports days or contested for provincial championships. Many of the better players were drawn by the competitive nature of the Northern or Southern Baseball Leagues. The Yorkton Cardinals spent the season in the Southern League in the summer of 1967, playing against the Melville Millionaires, Moose Jaw Regals, Regina Red Sox and Swift Current Indians. The team was led by playing manager Ed Stefureak, who had previously won the league championship with Regina in 1964, playing coach Merv Laube, and veteran catcher Gord Johnson. The roster included two American imports, Craig Friebe and Don Krick from Fresno, California, and a dozen local players.
Fans closely followed the team in the stands or through local media. It was having an average season and was in a fierce struggle to make the playoffs with an 8-10 record when Don Krick arrived in mid-July. The little lefthander with the blazing fastball lost his first game 5-1 against Regina, the dominant team in the league, despite striking out 15. He would lose only once more while winning seven. The Cardinals finished third and disposed of second place Moose Jaw 3-2 in the best of five semi-final, with Krick winning twice. The best of five final against Regina actually went to a sixth game. Each team won twice with a fifth game a tie. The sixth and final game was played in Yorkton where Regina managed only three hits off Krick, who was named the most valuable player in the playoffs. Stefureak and Krick were named to the leagues' first All Star team, with Johnson the second team catcher. The Cardinals continued play in the Southern League into the 1970s.
Team members were Merv Laube, Ernie Quine, Merv Campbell, Rollie Wilcox, Keith Washenfelder, Jerry Walker, Craig Friebe, Merv Froehlich, Doug Dilts, Gord Johnson, Bill Sobkow, Murray Eddy, Dale Sharples, Nelson Bryksa, Mike Carlson, Reg Coles, Ed Stefureak, Andy Boleziuk, Steve Sobkow, Don Krick, batboy Laurie LaBelle, Directors Elmer Lang, Harold Cross, Milt Baker, Dr. Steve Yaholnitsky, Linus Westberg, Hugh Owen and Jim Keilback.
Sandra Flaman began her running career as the result of encouragement from a teacher at Yorkdale Junior High School. She ran in a few indoor meets in the winter of 1981. The next fall as Sandra entered grade 9, she competed in a number of cross-country events. That winter she ran in more indoor meets and in spring she made the East Central track team and attended provincials in Saskatoon.
In the fall of 1982 she finished first in the junior women's cross country at the East Central meet and placed xixth out of 70 competitors at provincials. During the winter, as a member of the Yorkton Legion Bandits, Sandra won gold in the 1500m in Regina and gold in the 1000m and 3000m in Saskatoon. She participated in both the junior and senior divisions in track in the spring of 1983 and placed first in the junior 800m and second in the senior 3000m at provincials as a grade 10 student. That fall Sandra won the provincial cross country championship. The following spring she qualified for provincials in the 800m, 1500m and 3000m races and finished third in each.
Her coaches, Lynn Thompson and Ron Evancio, encouraged Sandra to compete in the summer road racing circuit. She achieved firsts in Yorkton, Prince Albert, Saskatoon, and Estevan and won the 19 and under road racing championship at age 17. In the 1984 Saskatchewan Summer Games in North Battleford, Sandra claimed a bronze in the medley relay, a silver in the 800m and gold in both the 1500m and 3000m. In the same year, she competed at the Legion Nationals in Halifax as a member of Team Saskatchewan. In the fall she repeated as provincial cross country champion. At the provincial track championships in the spring of 1985 she won gold in the 3000m, and silver in the 800m and 1500m races. At graduation Sandra was named the Yorkton Regional High School Female Athlete of the Year and received the Coaches Award. In the summer road race series she placed first four times in eight races and won the 19-and-under category for the second year in a row.
Garry spent most of his adult life behind the scenes of three major sports. As a teacher, coach, board member, official and mentor he has influenced a countless people. He played fastball with the Insinger Cardinals and the Theodore Chiefs in the Garry and Yellowhead Fastball Leagues for nearly 25 years. He played hockey with the Yorkton Junior B Terriers, the Langham Blues and the Theodore Buffalos. He was the secretary-treasurer and statistician of the Bates Hockey League from 1977 to 1982 and president of the Yellowhead Fastball League in 1988-89. As a board member of Softball Saskatchewan from 1991 to 1997, he helped to develop this organization's constitution and bylaws. The provincial body became recognized as one of the best organized in the province.
Garry was an instructor and official with the Saskatchewan Amateur Hockey Association, the head clinician for the SHA Referees Division and a Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League supervisor and assignor of officials. As the education co-ordinator for several teams he has providing career guidance for students in the hockey programs, and as a crisis counsellor for the SHA and MHA, assisted teams during traumatic experiences. Since the beginning of the wrestling program at the Yorkton Regional High School in 1990, Garry was the coach. Athletes he coached have won medals at the Saskatchewan High School provincials, and several have competed at the national level.
Garry received the Bronze Maple Leaf Award from the Saskatchewan Wrestling Association in 1997. He was named the Saskatchewan Student Advisor of the Year in 2001-02. He was the Yorkton Terrier Volunteer of the Year in 2002. In 2006, Garry received the commemorative Saskatchewan Centennial Medal, recognized as a builder in the sports of fastball, hockey and wrestling.
Born in Yorkton and raised on the family farm near Saltcoats, Joan and her rink won the Saskatchewan High School curling championship in 1983. She was class president that year and also named the Yorkton Regional High School female athlete of the year. Joan graduated from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon in 1987 and began her teaching career that fall. She resigned in 1998 to dedicate more time to curling, her three children and to being a motivational speaker. In 2001 she became a commentator for CBC curling broadcasts.
Joan's curling achievements are legendary. With husband Brian, himself a Saskatchewan men's provincial champion in 1991, 1993, and 2002, Joan won the Saskatchewan Mixed Curling championship in 1992. More notably, she and teammates Marcia Gudereit, Jan Betker, and Sandra Schmirler dominated women's curling in the 1990s, winning three Canadian and world curling titles in 1993, 1994, and 1997. ln the fall of 1997 they won the Olympic curling trials and the right to represent Canada at the 1998 Olympics in Nagano, Japan. The team returned with their greatest achievement, a gold medal.
Joan was named the all star second at the Canadian championships in 1994, 1995, 1997, and 2003. The team also won the TSN Skins Game in 1998 and was awarded the Canadian Press Team of the Year for 1998. They were inducted into the Canadian Curling Hall of Fame in 1999, the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 2000, and are also members of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame. Joan continued to curl competitively with Jan Betker, and the rink was the Saskatchewan champion in 2003, finishing fourth at the Canadian championship.
Jason Parker began his skating career with the CanSkate program of the Yorkton Figure Skating Club at age 3. He played hockey in the city minor hockey system between ages 6 and 12, and began speed skating with the Yorkton club at age 10. In 1988 Jason was chosen to the SaskFirst speed skating team. He was instrumental in developing the Melville Speed Skating Club in the early 1990s. From 1987 to 1993 he represented Saskatchewan in both the long and short track competitions at the Canadian championships. He competed at the Canada Winter Games in short track in 1991. During these years he was the Saskatchewan Athlete of the Month numerous times and was named Yorkton's Male Athlete of the Year in 1994.
After high school he moved to Calgary to train at the Olympic Oval. In 1994 Jason became the Canadian Junior Champion and competed at the Junior World Championships in Berlin, Germany. At the Canada Winter Games in Grande Prairie AB in 1995, Jason won four gold medals and set four Games' records. At the Games Jason received the Roland Michener Award for his leadership skills and commitment to scholastic and athletic excellence. In 1997 Jason finished second overall at the Canadian championships. This qualified him for the Canadian National Long Track Speed Skating Team. He won his first bronze medal in the 1500m at a World Cup race in Davos, Switzerland, and another bronze in the 1500m at the World Championships in Nagano, Japan. Jason finished third overall at the Canadian championships in 1998, won a bronze in the 1000m at the World Cup competition in Chuncheon, Korea, and a bronze in the 500m at the World Championships in Heerenveen, Netherland.
Jason attended 10 world championships, competed in 75 World Cup races (placing in the Top Ten 40 times) and participated in 110 international races. He was ranked fourth in the World Cup standings in the 1000 metre race for the 1998-99 season. He held the provincial record for the 500m from 1994 to 2005, the 1000m from 1994 to 2006, the 1500m from 1996 to 2006, and the Canadian record in the 1500m from 1998 to 2002. He was a competitive speed skater for 20 years and a member of the national team for 12 years. He was named the Saskatchewan Male Athlete of the Year in 1997 and 1999. After winning the first Olympic silver medal in Long Track Team Pursuit at the Torino Winter Olympics in 2006, Jason retired from competitive skating.
Adeline served in a variety of roles at the local figure skating club level for 35 years and devoted her time and energy to the improvement of the sport for the benefit of young skaters across the country. She began working at the local club level when her daughter began skating in Jansen in 1971. She continued volunteering for four years in Colonsay, four more years in Foam Lake and two in Melville before coming to Yorkton. Here she was the test chairperson, second and first vice president and served two terms as chairperson. Adeline co-chaired four provincial competitions hosted by the Yorkton Club and was the Zone 4 Coordinator. In 1992 she became a board member of Skate Canada Saskatchewan. For five years, she was the Recreation Skating Director, then served as second vice president, first vice president and six years as chairperson.
In 1990, she received the Elizabeth Swan Memorial Award for promotion of synchronized skating in Saskatchewan, having chaired the Dorothy Parker competition for six years. She received the Coaches' Choice Award in 1997. Adeline spent three years on Skate Canada's National Recreation Committee, three years on the Officials' Coordinating Committee, and three years on the Nominating Committee. She was a member of the Section Coordinating Committee and the National Board of Directors, each for six years. Adeline was a Senior Level Synchronized Skating Judge for 20 years. She qualified as a Section Level Skate Canada Results Accountant and also as a Computer Accountant. She was trained in the Cumulative Points Calculation System as a data specialist. Adeline attended 15 Skate Canada Annual General Meetings as a delegate in locations across the country. She visited many areas of the province in her capacities as a provincial board member and a skating judge.