With 17 teams, Alaska Legion touches every corner of state
Posted by Van Williams, ALB Media Director | Jun 20, 2016
The Alaska Legion Baseball season is in full swing and this weekend’s busy schedule was a good indicator as 16 of 17 AA teams were in action.
Eight fields were used in Juneau, Ketchikan, Kodiak, Wasilla and Anchorage.
Everybody played Saturday except Delta Post 22, the only team in the league that plays a mix of AA [varsity] and A [junior varsity] teams.
The 16 AA programs are vying for the chance to win the 63rd annual Alaska American Legion Baseball State Tournament at the end of July.
They are split into eight-team divisions and play an 18-game league schedule, after which the top eight advance to the state tournament at iconic Mulcahy Stadium and the bottom eight play in the Matson Invitational at Bartlett High.
For 50 years, Mulcahy Stadium has hosted the biggest games in Alaska.
The top three teams from each division after the regular season automatically qualify for the state tournament, as well as two wildcard teams based on the most points.
The AA standings are based on a point system; 4 for a win, 2 for a tie, 1 for a loss and 0 for a forfeit.
The Alaska AA state champion advances to the Northwest Regional in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The regional runs Aug. 3-7 and includes state champions from Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Wyoming and Washington.
Chugiak Post 33 is the defending state champion from Alaska.
The Legion World Series is Aug. 11-16 in Shelby, North Carolina.
As of last week, 3,786 Legion teams nationwide will take the field in 2016, according to legion.org.
This year’s national registration numbers showed an increase from the previous years.
Alaska has been part of the growth.
In the last few years, the ALB has expanded in Fairbanks and the Mat-Su Valley while adding teams in Kodiak, Ketchikan and Delta.
This story was written by Van Williams, a freelance writer in Anchorage and the ALB Media Director.