The final days of 2018 are here and it will prove to be a memorable year for many.  West Central Online is looking back at some of the biggest stories from 2018 in a year in review: 
Competition in the Fertile Valley Baseball League heated up this year with new teams and old rivalries.  In the end the 2018 season came to a close with a the Kindersley Raiders repeating as champions.

Make it back-to-back titles for the Kindersley Raiders Senior Baseball Club.

The Raiders defended their status as league champions with a 7-5 win in Game 3 over the Kindersley Stallions, taking the best-of-3 matchup 2-1.

Despite the rain and a late comeback attempt by the Stallions, the Raiders managed to hold onto their two-run lead in the top of the 7th with runners in scoring positions.

Byron Ismond was credited with the complete game W after starting in Game 1, striking out Stallions pitcher/shortstop Kyle Donaldson to clinch the championship for his team.

"It feels unbelievable," said Raiders first baseman Clayton Artymovich. "I don't know if we can do it a third time. We'll have to see how [Ismond's] arm feels in 2019."

kindersley raiders 2018 champs 1.jpg

TOP: The 2018 Kindersley Raiders posing with the league's new championship trophy. BOTTOM: Travis Longmire lifts the trophy and leads the charge across the field as the Raiders begin their celebrations. (photos: Brad Jennings/West Central Online)

This year's FVBL Finals matchup may have been one of the best in recent memory. Each game in the series had the teams separated by one or two runs with the fans on the edge of their seats until the last batter.

The Stallions had the upper hand in the series at the start when they won 2-1 in Game 1. But, as Artymovich explains, him and his teammates remained calm and followed the gameplan the next couple games.

"We've learned the lesson to not really get down on ourselves and not worry about the bad innings. At the end of the day, it's just a bunch of working men playing baseball," he said. "We were more than happy to get to the final and play against a bunch of our friends in the Stallions."

The Raiders took Game 2 6-5 after the Stallions nearly equalized in the bottom of the 7th to send the game to extras.

And so, the last chapter of the 2018 FVBL season is now complete. All that is left for these players are provincial tournaments in different locations throughout the province.

For the Raiders, they'll be doing a little more partying this long weekend before they play their last games of the summer.

Enjoy the rest of your summer, baseball fans. See you in May 2019.


Twitter: @MoisesCanalesJr

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