The Penticton Ice Girls softball team are taking the Pepsi Challenge.
Just not the one in which they take a swig of different soft drinks.
The Ice Girls will compete in an 18U division (open with A, B and C teams) at Softball City in White Rock Sept.13-15.
For six weeks, the Ice Girls have been training hard under coach Jeff Korven at Columbia Park Field to be ready for the tournament.
“I don’t think it will be over our head. We will have our work cut out for us,” said Korven, who has coached minor girls fastball for more than 10 years.
Korven has whipped the team into shape with various drills on the field and exercises using weights and other fitness tools.
“The main objective is to keep the girls interested in softball, to teach some softball skills and aspects of the game,” said Korven.
Having coached some of the players since they were 11, Korven said the strength of the team is on the mound with Tatiana Brazinha, Danielle Erdt, Jaedyn Foley and Katie Huston. Among the skills the pitchers have improved on is their ability to throw curve balls and sinkers. The camp concluded on Sept. 7 and Korven said since starting on July 1, the training was good for the group and the girls have completed their timed drills quicker.
“Every one of them is getting so much stronger,” said Korven.
Emma Reiter, the Ice Girls catcher, said the camp was tough but has seen great improvement.
“It’s been nice,” she said. “Fundamental skills are better.”
When it comes to playing strong teams, Reiter is scared and excited.
“It’s a lot of fun to compete against people that want to win and want to play hard,” she said.
The Ice Girls softball program is holding tryouts at Columbia Park on Sept. 20 for players born in 1997 and younger to form a B team. To sign up, or for more information, contact Kim Brazinha at 250-328-2917.
Also various businesses in the community pitched in to help build a shed at Columbia Park Field for the team to store their equipment.