Hel­land de­buts with Ex­press

Moose Jaw prod­uct gets call-up af­ter stel­lar sea­son in Midget AAA

Moose Jaw Times Herald - - SPORTS - RANDY PALMER

An im­pres­sive and pro­duc­tive sea­son for Moose Jaw base­ball prod­uct Reece Hel­land took an even more ex­cit­ing turn on Sun­day night at Ross Wells Park.

Com­ing off the Base­ball Sask. Midget AAA pro­vin­cial cham­pi­onships in Este­van with the Regina Wolf­pack only hours ear­lier, Hel­land donned the black and yel­low of the Moose Jaw Miller Ex­press for the first time as he pinch hit in the eighth in­ning of the Ex­press’ blow-out win over the York­ton Cardinals.

Hel­land only saw three pitches and struck out, but he took the field at sec­ond base in the top of the ninth and slickly grabbed a hard-hit ground ball and fired to first for the first out of the in­ning.

“It was good, it was a lit­tle nervewrack­ing at the start, af­ter those first two pitches I re­al­ized I was go­ing to have to do some­thing, but then he threw that curve­ball the last pitch and kind of made me look silly,” Hel­land said of his first at bat. As for his first play in the field….

“Hon­estly, all I was think­ing was

do what I do best, mak­ing plays on ground balls and I did it, thank god,” he said.

Hel­land joined the Ex­press af­ter com­plet­ing his first year of Midget AAA with the Regina Wolf­pack at provin­cials, where his squad lost their first two games be­fore record­ing a blowout win to close out their ap­pear­ance.

“It was good, the first two teams we played were pretty high in our league so it was tough try­ing to bat­tle them, but in our last game I felt we just went out there and hand fun and that was good,” he said.

Hel­land hit .274 with five dou­bles and two home runs to go along with 15 runs bat­ted in in 26 games with the Wolf­pack, who played in the Sask. Premier Base­ball League’s AAA divi­sion.

The de­ci­sion to play at the higher level this sea­son came out of his off­sea­son work with RBI Base­ball in Regina.

“I’ve been work­ing with RBI out of Regina and the coach was telling me that AAA skill is a lit­tle higher and you can get looked at a lit­tle more, so I de­cided to take that route and it re­ally helped me,” Hel­land said.

It was enough that the Ex­press took no­tice. Hel­land will be part of the team and dress the rest of the sea­son.

“It would be nice to get into a cou­ple more games so we’ll see what hap­pens the rest of the way,” Hel­land said.

RANDY PALMER/TIMES-HER­ALD

Reece Hel­land saw action in his first game with the Moose Jaw Miller Ex­press on Sun­day night.

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