Baseball season is underway, with the Challis-Mackay RiverCats scheduled to travel to Gooding on March 21 for their first regular-season game.
Locals can get a glimpse of the team in action at a Friday, March 15, scrimmage at Challis city park. The scrimmage begins at 1 p.m., RiverCats coach Ryan Millick said. Varsity and JV players will showcase their skills.
The RiverCats were supposed to open the season this week with a match against conference newcomer Salmon, but the Salmon squad had to cancel the game earlier this week. Everyone was geared up to play Friday, Millick said, so when the game was canceled, the scrimmage was scheduled to let people get outside and enjoy the sunshine, watch the players and munch on some snacks.
Bleacher seating is available at the ballpark. It’s still muddy around the field, Millick said, making sitting in lawn chairs less than ideal right now. If you want to watch from the comfort of your auto you’ll probably have to park in the mud, he said. Two patio heaters were purchased this year to heat the bleacher area, he said, so it should be more comfortable for spectators if it gets chilly.
RiverCats players have been practicing for a couple of weeks. After six days of workouts in the gym, the field had dried out enough last week to allow practice to move outside, Millick said.
This year’s RiverCats squad includes 15 Challis boys and five from Mackay. No girls joined the team this year, because a new girls’ softball program was implemented this spring.
The RiverCats team features many returning players, Millick said. “We should be a solid team,” with all the experience on the field, he said.
Millick gets help from four assistant coaches — Izzy Ollar, Bryce Jones and John Siggers in Challis and Justin Ivie in Mackay.
The Challis and Mackay players don’t get to practice together often, just a few times a season generally, but they combine for all the games.
The RiverCats play at home April 3, when they host Salmon at 4 p.m. Salmon is new to the conference this year, joining Challis-Mackay, West Jefferson and Firth in the league.