The Kalispell Lakers will be the only AA baseball team in the Flathead Valley next season after a restructuring in Montana American Legion.
There will be nine teams in the state next summer after two previous AA teams — the Glacier Twins and the Butte Miners — were dropped to Class A. The Twins were 0-25 in conference last year and Butte was 0-24. Both squads plan to compete in Class A next season.
The Glacier Twins board recently approved the change along with Montana American Legion officials.
The Kalispell Lakers organization recently announced the long-term signing of their current team manager and head coach Ryan Malmin. Malmin has been with the Lakers since 2006 and has compiled an overall career record of 489-263. Through his tenure in Kalispell, the Lakers have had six top-four finishes in the Western AA conference, seven tournament championships and a third-place finish in the 2010 Montana State Baseball Tournament.
“With the recent changes in the American Legion Montana State AA program to only nine teams it will be important to keep a strong program and Coach Malmin is key for our success,” Marc Liechti, Kalispell Lakers Board President, said.
With the Twins and Butte dropping from AA, the Lakers will be required to play 32 conference games between all of the eight AA opponents.
Malmin played American Legion baseball for the Twins in Whitefish from 1988-1990.
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