Wilber Lime men’s fastpitch

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Rice Lake, Wisc. Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

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By RONN KOPP / NAFA President

10 TEAMS TO COMPETE IN 36th RICE LAKE AQUAFEST INVITATIONAL MEN’S FASTPITCH TOURNAMENT

RICE LAKE, WISC. – Five teams from Wisconsin and five from Minnesota make up the roster of teams for the 36th Annual Rice Lake Invitational Men’s Fastpitch Tournament to be held June 13-15, once again in conjunction with the city’s annual Aquafest celebration.

Absent from the field is defending champion Wilber Lime of Galesville, eight-time tournament titlist, who ceased operations after capturing the North American Fastpitch Association “AA” championship in play at Des Moines, Iowa last August.

Wisconsin entries in the NAFA AA and A tournament include the Rice Lake Orangemen, the only team to have played in all 35 previous events, along with the La Crosse Athletics, Saw Dust City of Eau Claire, J.R. Sports of Arcadia, and defending Wisconsin state “A” division champion Bol’s Lanes of Baldwin.

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Finding a home for Wilber Lime trophies and awards

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

GALESVILLE, WISC – Since the early 1970s the Wilber Lime men’s fastpitch team of Galesville, Wisconsin has been a mighty force in the sport, winning many local, state, regional and national championships.

Over these forty-some years, manager John “Sporty” Salsman has collected a vast assortment of trophies and awards that the ball club has won. But John will be selling his home soon and must find a new home or homes for his collection.

He would like the collection to be dispersed among current and former Wilber Lime players. That’s his first and most ardent wish.

Another possibility presented by NAFA founder and Hall of Famer, Roger Regez, who is a long time friend of John’s, is to build some type of permanent weather-proof display at the Galesville ball park for all or some of the trophies and awards. That way, fastpitch fans can share and appreciate in the success of this great American fastpitch success story.

To date, John says no one has shown any interest in wanting them. He doesn’t wish to throw them away, but may have no other option if a solution can’t be found.

So all you former and current Wilber Lime players, please contact John at 608-221-1364 if you want a trophy or two, or have an idea for a solution. And I’m sure John would love to hear from you and talk fastpitch.

John Salsman and Wilber Lime, forever linked in Wisconsin fastpitch lore

Friday, September 13th, 2013

“He was intense, a perfectionist, and very disciplined. I chose Wilber because it was fun to play for John…” – Wilber Lime retired pitcher Allan Lundberg speaking about John Salsman.

GALESVILLE, WISC. – Allan Lundberg had his opportunities to leave for higher-caliber teams, and so did Jeff Moore. But both fastpitch pitchers – two of the best ever in Wisconsin state history – wouldn’t have dreamed of leaving the man they enjoyed playing for.

The man? John “Sporty” Salsman. His team? Wilber Lime of Galesville, Wisconsin.

“Without a doubt, he was the best manager I ever played for,” said Moore, 54, of Eau Claire. “He was honest and straight forward. He was a winner and commanded respect. That Wilber team was him.”

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Wilber Lime’s Band of Brothers rallies for NAFA championship

Sunday, August 11th, 2013

wilber.team.photo.97webWilber Lime won the 2013 NAFA AA World Series with a hard-fought 5-4 victory over Palasso’s Java House of Des Moines, Saturday. From left front, Matt Dale, Chip Timm, Travis Stram, Bob Loshek, Matt Stuhr, and Scott Gillitzer. Back left, Dan Stuhr, Dan Wall, Josh Marsh, Tim Hemmersbach, and Nate Berg. Photo By BOB OTTO

DES MOINES – Dan Wall found himself not throwing at his usual pace and out of sync. So he turned his trust over to his teammates and as a result Wall and Wilber Lime of Galesville, Wisconsin are NAFA World Series champions.

Down 3-0 in the first inning, Wilber Lime rallied for a 5-4 victory over a tough Palazzo’s Java House of Des Moines to claim the NAFA AA World Series championship late Saturday night.

Wall and his teammates found themselves on the short end in the top of the first after Palazzo’s took advantage of three walks, a hit batter and two hits off Wall too take the early lead.

But Wall had a little talk with himself and settled down the rest of the way.

“Tonight I was too excited and the adrenaline had kicked in, and I was working too fast,” Wall said. “I had to slow myself down. I have good teammates, so I had to trust in their ability to get outs and they did.”

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Great Memories of the Rice Lake Invitational Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

Monday, July 1st, 2013

By RONN KOPP / Wisconsin Fastpitch
NAFA Vice President

RICE LAKE, WISC – Ronn Kopp, tournament director of the Rice Lake Invitational Aquafest Men’s Fastpitch Tournament, has 35 years of great memories of one of the longest running and most popular tournaments in Wisconsin and the Midwest.

Looking back, five memorable moments stand out, but one in particular is a classic:

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Ten teams to compete in 35th Rice Lake Aquafest Invitational Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

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Rice Lake Orangemen pitcher Bryan Lathrop in action during the 2010 North American Fastpitch Association (NAFA) World Series.

By RONN KOPP / ronnkopp@charter.net
Wisconsin Fastpitch

RICE LAKE, WIS – Defending champion Wilber Lime of Galesville headlines the roster of ten teams for the 35th Rice Lake Invitational Men’s Fastpitch Tournament to be held June 14-16, once again in conjunction with the city’s annual Aquafest celebration.

Wilber has captured the tourney title a total of seven times.

STRONG COMPETITION
Five other Wisconsin squads and four from Minnesota complete the 2013 field.
Wisconsin entries include the Rice Lake Orangemen, the only team to have played in all 34 previous events, along with the La Crosse Athletics, Saw Dust City of Eau Claire, Dugout Bar and Grill of Cushing, and the Gators of Farmington.

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Elmer and Merna Wilber inducted into NAFA Hall of Fame

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

Photos Courtesy of Ronn Kopp

GALESVILLE, WISCONSIN – On Saturday, August 4, longtime sponsors of the Wilber Lime men’s fastpitch team Elmer (posthumously) and Merna Wilber were inducted into the NAFA Hall of Fame at ceremonies in Galesville. Merna and Elmer started sponsoring Wilber Lime in 1974.

NAFA president Ronn Kopp, fellow founding member Roger Regez, both Hall of Famers, along with long time Wilber Lime manager John “Sporty” Salsman, a Hall of Fame inductee in 2009, represented NAFA Executive Director Benjie Hedgecock at the event. A large gathering of present and former Wilber Lime players were also present.

Mrs. Wilber is the first woman to be admitted to “the Hall.”

To read the Wilber’s story visit Elmer & Merna Wilber

To read more about NAFA Hall of Fame members visit NAFA Hall of Fame

Wilber Lime wins seventh title in Rice Lake Aquafest

Friday, June 29th, 2012

RICE LAKE, WI – It was the same two teams – Wilber Lime of Galesville and The Bar of Appleton Athletics – who locked horns in the championship game a year ago; and who now met once again, battling for the 34th annual 2012 Aquafest Men’s Fastball crown, June 15-17 at Tate Park in Rice Lake.

But this time the result was reversed as Wilber – the winners of six previous Invitational titles – rallied from a 7-2 second inning deficit to prevail in a slugfest, 15-7.

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