An Oklahoma American Legion Baseball team, the Pawhuska Roadrunners, will be competing this summer in the program’s AAA division for 17-year-olds and under, according to Danny Mooney, a team spokesman.
The local team — which held its first practice on Saturday, May 17 — is awaiting a season schedule from American Legion state officials, Mooney said. He added that the Roadrunners plan to play this season’s home games at the Pawhuska High School baseball field.
"But, we’re hoping that the new field will be ready before next year," said Mooney, referring to a community effort started last summer for building a new ball field complex near the Osage County Fairgrounds.
Preliminary designs and groundwork already have been completed at the site, officials said.
Mooney and Floyd Brown are to serve as managers for the team, which will be coached by Duane Dagenais, Danny Chronister and PHS head baseball coach Brian Edwards.
Several members of the Huskies’ recent varsity team are expected to be on the roster of the Roadrunners, which also will include some of the top junior-varsity and freshmen players. A dozen prospects were on the Pawhuska roster initially submitted to the state, but, as of Tuesday, two more names had been added to the list.
A late attempt to organize an American Legion team here proved unsuccessful last year.
"This time, we started earlier and have received a very good response," Mooney said. "Everybody is looking forward to really getting things off the ground and establishing a team that will be around for years to come."
American Legion Baseball is a nearly 90-year-old national institution that includes teams representing AL Posts from all 50 states. There are two American Legion levels in a senior division for ages 19 and under, as well as AAA and a lower AA classification in the 17-and-under junior division.
Pawhuska’s team will be sponsored by Harold Bigheart Smalley American Legion Post 198.