Sardis academy sends two to Royals

The Douglas College Royals will have two Sardis secondary school grads on the diamond when their next season starts.

Sardis secondary students

Sardis secondary students

Two graduating Sardis secondary school students will be playing ball at Douglas College next year, suiting up for the Royals.

Brad Fitzsimmons and Kim Guliker are both graduates of the Sardis baseball academy.

Fitzsimmons will be playing baseball at Douglas College.

Guliker will be playing softball.

“I got in touch with Douglas College through Shawn Corness, who’s part of the academy here,” Guliker explained. “Gord (Royals coach Collings) came to watch me play and apparently really liked me at lot. And he recruited me about a week and a half later.”

A recent arrival in Chilliwack, Guliker moved from Mission two years ago, just as the Sardis academy was getting off the ground.

“Shawn (Corness) knows a lot and he spends a lot of time working on the little things,” Guliker noted. “My batting was really messed up for a long time, but he noticed something with my swing and helped me fix it.”

Guliker plays rep softball in Abbotsford, and that is where Collings watched her play.

A naturally athletic shortstop, Guliker has a strong arm and good range in the field. At the plate, she hits for average and has modest pop.

“I was pretty excited that Douglas wanted me because I never really thought I was that good,” Guliker said. “I was thinking about money and part-time jobs and having to pay my way through school. This doesn’t give me a whole lot of financial help, but it lets me apply for courses before anyone else, which is nice.”

Guliker has applied and been accepted to pursue a business degree.

“I’ve been working at a cold storage place in Aldergrove, managing our shipping and receiving office,” she said. “I’m pretty good at it, and it comes pretty easy to me. Once I get a business degree, I’ll have a lot of options open to me.”

Fitzsimmons isn’t as sure what he wants to do, and he’ll be going into general studies at Douglas.

“After a year or two, maybe I’ll narrow it down,” he surmised.

His primary focus is on the diamond, where he hopes the Royals will serve as a springboard to CIS baseball at the University of British Columbia.

“Shawn (Corness) knows the coach at Douglas (Josh Ridgeway), and he thought it would be a good spot for me if I eventually want to get to UBC,” Fitzsimmons said. “He got their coach to come out and watch a couple games of mine, and they ended up recruiting me.”

Fitzsimmons came up through Chilliwack Minor Baseball, splitting time between the field and pitching mound. With the Royals, Fitsimmons will focus on pitching, looking to add velocity and hone his offerings (a two-seam fastball, change-up and curveball).

“I throw decently hard (approximately 84-85 miles per hour) and I have a pretty good work ethic,” Fitzsimmons said. “The coach really appreciates a good work ethic, so that probably helped me a lot.”

While Fitzsimmons has long thought about baseball’s potential to provide him with an education, he’s only started to consider it realistic in the last two years.

Like Guliker, he gives a lot of credit to the baseball academy and the instruction of Corness.

“This was a huge part of it,” he said, gesturing at the facility located on a piece of property on Keith Wilson Road. “Being able to throw every day and get your reps in every day, that’s the biggest thing. Training two or three days a week isn’t enough.”

Fitzsimmons expects a big leap in competition as he heads into the tough Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges (NWAAC) conference.

But the training he’s received in Chilliwack makes him feel ready for the challenge.

“Their division is really competitive and a really big step up for me,” he said. “They have some really good schools in the United States. The focus will be to get bigger, throw harder and refine what I’m doing on the mound.”

Get information on the Douglas College baseball and softball teams online at

Just Posted

Dancers from the Sts’ailes First Nation perform the eagle dance at a welcome banner dedication ceremony on Thursday, June 10. “Ey Swayel” is a Halq̓eméylem term translated as ‘a good day.’ (Adam Louis/Observer)
VIDEO: ‘A good day’ for Agassiz school as Sts’ailes welcome banner is dedicated

Banner hangs above the school’s entrance, welcoming students, staff and visitors

Kalyn Head, seen here on June 4, 2021, will be running 100 kilometres for her “birthday marathon” fundraiser on July 23. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack woman’s 100-km birthday marathon to benefit Special Olympics B.C.

Kalyn Head hopes run raises awareness, advocates for inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities

RCMP investigating June 15, 2021 crash. (Black Press file)
Chilliwack RCMP say crash into median led to impaired driver investigation

Chrysler 300 driver allegedly collided with tree on Spadina median in June 15 incident

UFV athletes were honoured for their strength and perseverance during the pandemic. (UFV photo)
Fraser Valley athletes recognized in year without sports

UFV Cascades athletes honoured for strength shown during the pandemic

Abbotsford council has given permission for Chilliwack to use the JAMES wastewater treatment plant for the disposal of trucked liquid waste until the end of September.
Chilliwack gets exemption to Abbotsford bylaw prohibiting liquid waste from other cities

Process in place until September while new facility under construction in Chilliwack

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

A search is underway for a 75-year-old fisherman who went missing near Port Angeles Thursday evening. (Courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard)
Search continues for angler missing between Port Angeles and Victoria

Canadian, U.S. Coast Guard searching for 75-year-old man reported missing Thursday evening

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

Most Read