Canadian Region Tournament Milestones

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The Canadian Region tournament series structure has evolved and changed significantly since the region was formed in 1958. Key events in the evolution of this structure include the following:

YEARMILESTONE
1951Twelve years after Little League baseball is founded in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, the first Canadian charters are established when leagues are formed in Sydney, Nova Scotia and Vancouver, British Columbia. For the next several years, Canadian leagues compete alongside U.S. leagues in tournaments that lead up to the Little League World Series.
1952The Montreal National (QC) Little League becomes the first Canadian league to qualify for the Little League World Series. The next year, the Vancouver National (BC) LL also earns a World Series berth.
1958The Canadian Region is established. The region encompasses Ontario and Quebec from a tournament standpoint, with the two provinces' champions playing each other for the region title and an automatic Little League World Series berth. Leagues in the Prairies and British Columbia compete in the West and North Region tournament structures, while leagues in the Maritime provinces cannot advance beyond the Maritime Provinces tournament.
1963The Maritime provinces are included in the international tournament competition for the first time, as the winner of the Maritimes tournament advances to the Quebec divisional tournament, where they face district champions from Quebec.
1965For the first time, the Canadian Region tournament encompasses all of Canada. As in years past, Eastern and Western Canada both crowned champions, but for the first time, these two champions meet for the Canadian Region title. The Stoney Creek Optimist (ON) LL defeats East Trail (BC) 4-0 at Dundas, Ontario to become the first all-Canada champion. Stoney Creek advances to the championship game of the World Series before falling to Windsor Locks (CT). Stoney Creek's World Series performance represents the best finish ever by a Canadian league at the World Series.

The change in the Canadian Region tournament structure occurs one year after the East Trail LL (BC) comes within one game of giving Canada two World Series representatives by finishing as the West Region tournament runner-up.

1966Rather than an East-versus-West final game, the Canadian Region Tournament is a four-team, single-elimination tournament. The 1966 tournament is held in Victoria, British Columbia, but the tournament's site has rotated from year-to-year since it became a nationwide event. Teams at the 1966 tournament were the champions of British Columbia, Ontario, the Prairie Provinces, and Eastern Canada (Quebec and the Maritimes).
1968The Maritime champion advances directly to the five-team Canadian Region tournament for the 1968 tournament season. The following year, however, the Maritimes again must advance through an Eastern Canada divisional tournament that includes Quebec leagues.
1969The region tournament begins using a double knock-out format. In the inaugural year of this double-elimination format, Valleyfield (QC) loses its opening round game before coming through the loser's bracket and winning the region title.
1972For the first time, the host league for the region tournament fields a team that competes against the provincial and divisional tournament champions. Sixteen years later, the 1988 Glace Bay (NS) LL becomes the first host league to win the Canadian championship.
1975For the first time, the region tournament employs the round-robin tournament structure that is still in use today. After the five-team field each plays four games, the top two teams meet in the championship game. In the event of ties, knock-out games are played to cut the field to two teams. In the first year that this format is used, a three-way tie for second place ensures that four of the five teams competing in the region tournament advance to knock-out or championship round games.

The new round-robin format has been used annually in each year since 1975 with the exception of 1978, when a double-elimination format is used.

1977The Maritime provinces champion advances directly to the region tournament, and officials began employing a six-team, round-robin format that is then followed by elimination games.
2001In a minor change to the region tournament format, the top four teams (instead of the top two) following round-robin competition now advance to single-elimination semifinal and championship round competition. The new format mirrors the structure used by other international and U.S. region tournaments.
2013Alberta and a Prairie Provinces champion both advance champions to the Canadian Region tournament, rather than the single Prairie Provinces champion that had previously qualified. The Prairie Provinces now encompass Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

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Last revision: 09/01/2015