Team Canada left-hander set to become WCL’s first female player
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 16, 2017
VICTORIA, B.C. – It is a landmark day for the Victoria HarbourCats, as the West Coast League club is proud to announce the signing of left-handed pitcher Claire Eccles, who is set to become the first female player in WCL history.
LHP Claire Eccles, University of British Columbia, Sophomore, Surrey, BC
Eccles, 19, represented Canada at the 2016 Women’s Baseball World Cup in South Korea last September, making two appearances including a complete game in her one start. In 8.2 innings pitched in the tournament, Eccles allowed just two hits while striking out five batters. Canada finished the Women’s Baseball World Cup in second place, capturing the silver medal.
“I’m extremely excited to be getting the opportunity to play at such a high level of ball, and being the first female in Canada to do so,” said Eccles. “The HarbourCats seem like an amazing organization and I can’t wait to play for them. As much as this is an accomplishment for myself, I can’t help but realize that this is a step in the right direction for any girl with a dream of playing baseball. There’s a bigger picture out there.”
“On behalf of the Women’s National Team program, we would like to congratulate Claire and wish her success with the HarbourCats this season,” said Andre Lachance, manager of Baseball Canada’s Women’s National Team.
A graduate of Elgin Park Secondary in Surrey, B.C., Eccles batted .293 as a sophomore outfielder for the University of British Columbia softball team this spring. A fellow outfielder on the team is Mackenzie Siddall, daughter of Toronto Blue Jays radio broadcaster and former major league player Joe Siddall.
“We are excited to add Claire to the HarbourCats, and can’t wait to see her getting a chance to throw for us and compete for innings out of the bullpen,” said Brad Norris-Jones, General Manager of the HarbourCats. “Claire has competed at and been successful at many levels of the game, playing against both women and men, and we think her poise on the mound and experience internationally will give her a chance to get the outs we need.”
“The West Coast League is about providing opportunities,” said Tony Bonacci, Acting President of the West Coast League and President of the Cowlitz Black Bears. “We are all looking for talented, competitive players to improve our ball clubs. Claire has demonstrated both, and we congratulate her and the HarbourCats on what is a tremendous opportunity for both of them.”
Eccles, listed at 5-8, will be introduced to the media at a press conference in Victoria on Tuesday, May 16 at 1:00pm Royal Athletic Park, and will help the team unveil the new uniforms that will be worn for games this season under new Head Coach Brian McRae.
Eccles will be with the HarbourCats throughout the season, but commitments with Team Canada and elite softball programs will take her away at times. She is scheduled to join the HarbourCats in Victoria on June 6 prior to their game against the Wenatchee AppleSox.
The HarbourCats open the 2017 WCL season on June 1 on the road against the WCL’s newest team, the Port Angeles Lefties. Their home opener at Royal Athletic Park is June 5 when the Wenatchee AppleSox visit Victoria.
Single game tickets are available at the HarbourCats office and online: https://t.co/8fTF63alFb
2017 SEASON TICKETS
Over 60,000 fans attended HarbourCats games in 2016 for an average of 2,239 fans per game, which led the West Coast League and ranked ninth in all of North America among summer-collegiate clubs. Secure your favorite seat today for the 2017 season.
Seating location and pricing (Fees and taxes included) options are as follows—
CAMPBELL REAL ESTATE CLUB SEATS (Padded & served. First two rows of Grandstand.) SOLD OUT
DIAMOND CLUB SEATS (Added in 2016)
$589.50 (SOLD OUT)
MAIN GRANDSTAND (Section 10, covered)
PREMIUM SEATING (Sections 6-7-8-9-11-12, blue bucket seats)
GENERAL ADMISSION (Silver bleachers, picnic areas, wheelchair seating, soccer grandstand)
*All prices listed are base price, and do not include fees or GST.
Visit the HarbourCats office at 101-1814 Vancouver Street or call (778)-265-0327 to purchase season tickets or for more information. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details, or go to the team website at harbourcats.com.
HOMEWARD BOUND PET FOOD DELIVERY – OFFER EXTENDED
Any purchase of a HarbourCats season ticket or 10-pack during the month of May will include a free bag of dog or cat food from Homeward Bound Pet Food Delivery.
10-packs include 10 un-dated vouchers to be redeemed for game tickets (pending availability) in any combination.
Visit http://www.homewardboundpetfood.com and Homeward Bound Pet Food Delivery Victoria on Facebook.
2017 SEATTLE VACATION
The HarbourCats are staging their second consecutive fan vacation to Seattle in 2017 to see the Blue Jays take on the Mariners.
The 2017 vacation takes place June 9-11, 2017 and will include:
- Travel on Wilson’s Transportation buses from to and from Victoria and Seattle. Ferry cost also included.
- Field level tickets for all three Blue Jays @ Mariners games at Safeco Field.
- Two nights at the Hilton Embassy Lynnwood.
Total cost is $798 per person (based on double occupancy). Different rates available for triple as well as single occupancy.
Registration for HarbourCats season ticket holders is $725 (based on double occupancy). The trip is not expected to interfere with the HarbourCats home schedule, as the team is expected to be on the road during this time.
To register, contact Carey Shelby at Flight Centre (1-866-299-5614) or email@example.com
The HarbourCats office (1814 Vancouver Street, 778-265-0327) is open and operating under off-season hours.
May office hours:
MONDAY-FRIDAY – 9:00am – 5:30pm
SATURDAY-SUNDAY – Closed (Except by appointment)
Jim Swanson (Managing Partner, Victoria HarbourCats) 778-265-0327
Brad Norris-Jones (General Manager, Victoria HarbourCats) 250-888-2003
Brittany French (Assistant GM, Victoria HarbourCats) 778-265-0327