Prep Baseball & Softball

A trip down memory lane in 50th Fresno Easter Classic. Who was the first champion?

There is plenty of history to go around when it comes to playing in the Fresno Easter Classic.

The three-day baseball tournament began on Monday and concluded Wednesday with the championship game of the 50th Fresno Easter Classic between Buhach Colony-Atwater and Clovis.

The Thunder defeated the Cougars 9-1 as Buhach Colony scored eight runs in the fourth inning to break open a 1-1 tie.

Clovis was seeking its 10th championship of the long-standing tournament, Central Section historian Bob Barnett said.

Which programs are close to Clovis in the title category? Try Buchanan and Bullard with six championships apiece.

The Classic began in 1970 with the championship being played on March 26, 1970, featuring Fresno and Hoover.

The Patriots captured the first title, defeating the Warriors 12-8 at John Euless Ballpark.

The first Easter Classic most valuable player was Fred Wagner, Barnett said.

And who were the coaches in the first championship game? For Fresno it was Ron Schiller and Hoover was led by Jack Hannah.

More history: When the Fresno Easter Classic started, there were eight teams: Monache, San Joaquin Memorial, Redwood-Larkspur, Los Altos, Fresno, Clovis, Hoover and Bullard.

Only Fresno, Memorial and Hoover have played in each of the 50 years in the tournament.

Anthony Galaviz: 559-441-6042, agalaviz_TheBee

Anthony Galaviz writes about sports for The Fresno Bee. He covers the Oakland Raiders, high schools, boxing, MMA and junior colleges. He’s been with The Bee since 1997 and attended Fresno City College before graduating from Fresno State with a major in journalism and a minor in criminology.