HISTORY OF THE TRIBE

The Weston Creek Indians Baseball Club was established in 1977. The ‘Indians’ - as we are now known around town - were formed as a result of a member split from our parent club - the Woden Rebels. 

 

So the story goes that a small group of enthusiastic parents – including well known names such as Watson, Brewer, Horwood, Packwood, Jensen, Hosie, and led by the irrepressible Graham ‘Big Chief’ Gregory – were keen to see several young players given a fair go in being selected for the Woden Rebels ‘A’ Grade team. When this opportunity continued to be denied to the players, despite their form suggesting otherwise, the parents decided they would form their own club. And so the Tribe was born. 

 

The early beginnings of the club in their newly designed red, white and green uniforms were very successful to say the least. The Indians very much hit the ground running and soon began dominating throughout the various senior and junior grade competitions of the era. The early 1980’s in particular were paved with appearances in numerous Grand Finals, and with countless players being named in representative squads at both senior and junior levels. As well as being spectacularly successful on the diamond, the club flourished off the field as well and steadily built up its player and supporter base. Always able to muster volunteers for the cause, the club strengthened its financial viability by holding countless fundraising efforts over the years – the most famous of these being the early ‘Lamington’ drives. Many hours were spent baking, dusting and packing dozens of homemade lamingtons so that the club could afford to maintain playing cost to a reasonable level for all of our players. These unselfish efforts of our volunteers continue to this very day and continue to make the Indians one of the most financially secure clubs in ACT Baseball. 

 

The 1990’s continued to bring countless successes to the club. After collecting a couple of early A Grade premierships in the mid 80’s, 1991 proved to be one of the most decorated years in the club’s history. As well as winning both the A Grade premiership and minor premiership, several of our lower grades also collected grand final wins, and the club was crowned overall club champion. Many more of our players from that era went on to play representative baseball for the ACT, the new Canberra ABL team (the Bushrangers) and several signed to go on and play American college baseball. The crowning glory for the Indians Baseball Club was undoubtedly the day one of our favourite sons –starting pitcher Jeff Williams – was eventually signed by the Los Angeles Dodger organisation to play in the US Major League. To this day, Jeff is still the only player from the region to make it all the way onto a Major League diamond, and the club couldn’t be prouder of his achievements in the game. Jeff also played at 2 Olympic games for Australia, although I’m sure he would admit his greatest triumph was pitching the winning game in that 1991premiership for the Tribe !! 

 

The new millennium – 2000 onwards - bought with it new challenges for the club. However the never ending loyalty and support from past and present players and supporters always seems to get the Indians through the tough times. The club is now as successful as ever, with an ever increasing junior and senior player base. The introduction of US import players to the club has expanded the reaches of the Indians beyond our shores, and so many of these players leave after a season of playing summer baseball with the Indians having nothing but praise for our club and the way it conducts its business. A new local Australian Baseball League franchise - The Canberra Cavalry – has emerged, and with it comes the opportunity for our players to reach for greater heights in Australian Baseball. The inception of Women’s baseball in the mid 2000’s further broadened the reach of the sport locally, and with it came a refreshing new group of players and supporters to our great club

 

All in all, the history of the Weston Creek Indians Baseball Club is littered with outstanding success and a truckload of silverware. Our teams, along with our individual stars of past and present have covered themselves in glory over the preceding 3 decades of local baseball. However, while all the successes on the field can easily be measured in trophies, the selfless effort of all those people contributing off the diamond is what makes the Indians a truly special baseball club. The Tribe is a baseball club built on friendship, loyalty and above all an unswerving attitude to be the best baseball club in Canberra and while looking back on our history is always a pleasure, it is our ability to constantly look to the future that has made the Club the spectacular success that it is today.

 

Danny Serena

President