Southwestern Saskatchewan baseball supporters may have been surprised to see the name template “Coteau Hills” used during a local senior baseball season. Some may be surprised to see it again, and some might be surprised to see it at all.

Here are two of the leagues players this past year in Rosetown’s Ryan Wickett and Outlook’s Jordan Rolleston just trying to say it.

No matter who provided the correct pronunciation, it would definitely be an interesting note as to who initially came up with the idea to bring back the league this year.

“The guys from Beechy kind of got it fired up,” explained Rosetown Angels manager Ryan Wickett.

“They were talking with Riverhurst and Dinsmore about kind of putting together an exhibition schedule, then a few other teams jumped in, so they made a bit of a league out of it for the year.”

The RM of Coteau is home to Saskatchewan attractions like the Gardiner Dam and the Resort Village of Coteau Beach, though when looking back at the history books, the region has always kind of been home to the now defunct sports league. Atypical seasons in the past have resulted in a few instances where the valley’s teams would come together after previously drifting apart.

Both a hockey and baseball chapter of the league existed into the 1960s representing teams from the area, that would eventually be absorbed in baseball by the Fertile Valley Baseball League, and in hockey by the Sask Valley Hockey League. Beechy, Dinsmore, Kyle, Lacadena, and Lucky Lake are listed as the likely founding members of each Coteau Hills league.

A majority of this summer’s teams hailed from the FVBL. The league suspended play this year, so when the Outlook Riverhawks, Kyle Yellowjackets, Elrose Aces, Beechy Breakers, and Rosetown Angels needed a place to play, they joined up with the Riverhurst Raiders of the Dunning Baseball League, and two upstart teams out of the heart of the Coteau Hills in Dinsmore as they provided an 18U team as well as a senior squad for this season.

Outlook was named the champion after taking a one game playoff against the Elrose Aces, allowing the league to complete 35 games in total for a season that many people likely thought would have never gotten as far as a few exhibitions back when the other leagues were shutting down.

MORE: Outlook Riverhawks Celebrating Coteau Hills League Title

“It was good to get back out on the diamond. At the start of the year we weren’t even sure if we were going to have baseball or what was going on,” said Outlook player Jordan Rolleston, “A lot of the same teams that were in it years ago had teams again, so we fired up the Coteau Hills League.”

(Outlook River Hawks Senior Baseball on Facebook)

Rolleston guessed the early 2000s as the last time an actual Coteau Hill’s campaign might have been played, while Rosetown’s Ryan Wickett can recall a team from Macrorie playing a season with the area’s usual suspects as recent as two decades ago as well. Regardless of the origins and past history of the league, it has been there when it counts.

“You know the Aces and Macrorie, Dinsmore had a team then, Beechy. There were a bunch of teams out in that direction and I believe it was called the Coteau Hills League,” explained Wickett, the current commissioner for the Rosetown/Kindersley based FVBL, “When that league went away we got the FVBL going probably 10 years ago I guess, and now it’s kind of morphed back into this league which is nice to see.”

The idea of a more localized league has to be enticing for teams like Outlook all the way to Kyle that are used to making multiple treks to Kindersley each year. A team like Rosetown is in a precarious spot thanks to their managers position as rivaling league commissioner, not to mention the towns closer proximity to the valley as well making it an easy move for the Angels to leave the FVBL if they should so choose. Leaving several Kindersley teams and their strong level of competition in the dust may cause a problem, so maybe something gets worked out to set up a Coteau Hills/Fertile Valley Championship Series if the senior baseball landscape is shifted again next season.

All of this is only a possibility because everyone involved with the resurrected league this year including the Riverhawk’s Rolleston, left the season excited for what could come next.

“I think moving forward we will probably continue on with this. As far as I know there are no plans to shut it down again,” he said, “It seemed to work well this year the kind of a smaller league, but a little bit less travel than we were used to before.”

The FVBL housing west central baseball next year is certainly not as big a guarantee as it once was after the league has seen some drastic changes over the last few years. After going from its normal format to the now retired two division system, followed by two makeshift pandemic years, the league is certainly not on similar footing to where it once was.

The upstart league will need to prove themselves once again if they do move into their second complete season next year, but reviving the once dead league would be the perfect thing to keep the reinvigorated baseball spirits high in the Coteau Hills region.