SIX NATIONS — On Tuesday night, surrounded by Six Nations Elected Council members, other delegations and family, Cara Skye, 12, was recognized for her achievements in softball as a pitcher for the Cambridge Coyotes.
Her parents Louise and William ‘Bill’ Skye, her aunt Shirley Johnson, and coach Shane Graham were present during her recognition, as Chief Ava Hill read her bio aloud to the applaud and nods of the other SNEC members.
“The future for Cara is very bright and as her coach I look forward to helping her strive to make it to the highest level,” said Graham. “Anytime one of your players receives recognition for their success in life, you are proud as a coach.”
Skye helped the Coyotes have a very successful 2019 season which lead them to 6 Gold Medals, 3 Silver Medals in tournament play and a Grand Valley League Championship.
The Coyotes finished the 2019 season with 72 Wins – 5 Loses – 2 Ties.
Skye said that her career in ‘ball began six years ago.
“I started to play t-ball then I moved up into the Brantford Bobcats, then from the Bobcats I moved up into a U-12 team, but I was actually only nine years-old.”
Skye luckily turned 10 by provincials to play and played with the Bobcats ahead of her age division. Backed by her parents, she now makes the trip to play an hour away from home three-times a week.
“I put a lot of effort and time into this,” she said. “It’s just fun to play with my team.”
Skye was with the Coyotes in nine tournaments this season as they earned silver medals at the Queen of Diamonds and the Provincial Tier 1 Grand Championship and gold medals at the Waterloo Invitational, Hurricane Hazel Showdown, John Cross Memorial, Battle of the Bats, UTM Big Show, Provincial Qualifiers and Grand Valley Ladies Association Playoffs.
Skye was then voted in by her teammates to represent the Cambridge Coyotes at the 2019 Ontario All-Star Game. She played with fellow All-Stars from the Grand Valley League against the Peel/Halton All-Stars. Even among the top players in the province she played a big role in the GVLSA All-Stars 6 – 2 victory over the Peel/Halton All-Stars. She was named starting pitcher for the game and pitched a solid 2 innings. She also demonstrated her power early in the game with a home-run in her first at bat of the game. Her performance earned her the All-Star Game MVP Award.
Strong and sure of herself, Skye said that she has more plans for the future besides wanting to earn a scholarship for baseball.
“I want to be national champions this year, because this is when we can go and qualify for the nationals. Then after that I’m going to strive to get better and get on Team Canada and then maybe go into the olympics. So that’s where my big goal is,” she said.
But after finding her niche in softball, “the next Carey Leigh Vyse” points her achievements to “hard work,” offering words of encouragement to other young athletes: “‘All it takes is all you got,’ is what we have on the back of our t-shirts and ‘have fun competing’ is the main thing on our team and that’s the main advice that I would give to other kids.”
“If you don’t have fun competing then you’ll lose your energy and you will lose sight of why you’re playing and you’ll lose the fun of the game.”
The recognition she received, she said, felt “good” and “amazing” and she knows she has more work cut out for her.
Skye’s individual statistics were among the top in Ontario for batting and pitching.
Cara Skye Individual Stats
GP PA AB H HR RBI R AVG OBP SLG OPS
79 229 194 94 14 99 98 0.485 0.559 0.979 1.538
IP GP ER BB SO ERA WHIP
126.1 52 18 47 222 0.997 0.902