As start of inaugural season approaches, Sioux Falls Sunfish searching for host families


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The Sioux Falls Sunfish are a new baseball franchise in the summer collegiate Expedition League. Though their inaugural season has been postponed because of COVID-19, the Sunfish are hopeful to play this season.

The Sioux Falls Sunfish were suppose to be playing baseball this week, but COVID-19 threw them a curveball.

“Yesterday was actually opening day, we were suppose to be in Pierre. Today was an off day, then we would have been back in Pierre tomorrow and the next day and then we would have been starting our home-stand this upcoming Friday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday,” Assistant GM James Van Dyke said.

The Sunfish hope to resume the season in July, but they still need housing for at least 20 of their players.

“So host families, as you would imagine during a pandemic, it’s been tough, but it is getting better. The word is getting out there. That’s the fastest way for host families to learn about what we do,” Van Dyke said.

They’ve reached out to both Augustana and USF, along with Post 15 legion baseball, the Sioux Empire Baseball association, and the Stampede’s Billet Family Coordinator Gail Evans, who reached out to all of their housing families hoping to help.

“It will change your life. You will have a bond with that player for the rest of your life. I get calls on Mother’s Day, I still get calls on Mother’s Day, and I haven’t housed for probably 5 years,” Billet Family Coordinator Gail Evans said.

Despite the obstacles they still need to overcome, the Sunfish are hopeful to play their inaugural season.

“It’s all been a challenge, but we’re fighting through it. Things are getting better here and definitely moving forward, hoping to play some baseball this summer,” Van Dyke said.

Though Sioux Falls has lifted restrictions on entertainment venues, the Sunfish say they still need approval from Augustana to use their facilities before they can resume their season. If you’re interested in becoming a host family for the Sunfish, click here.

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