Late last year Ace of Spades (AOS) Baseball Canada held a PA Day fundraiser for High Park Little League that raised more than $2500. When AOS founder Ivan Rusova (center in photo) learned that the league’s catcher’s gear needed to be replaced he came up with a win-win idea.

An alumnus of the High Park program, Rusova runs a popular training academy for kids 5-15 years old. When he heard that HPLL needed to swap out aging catching gear for the house league program, he offered to cover the additional expense to ensure each of the 16 teams would benefit from the latest gear.

To complete the winning story, AOS, will be reconditioning the used equipment and sending it to kids in either the Dominican Republic or Cuba who often don’t have access to proper baseball supplies.

“High Park Little League is a wonderful program and we wanted to contribute to its continued success while also finding a way to help less fortunate kids in the Caribbean where the used equipment will make a big difference,” says Pavel Chavez Rusova, AOS program director, who aalong with his brother also runs an AOS baseball academy in Orlanda, Florida. The brothers are in the final stages of opening a similar facility in the GTA.

Due to Covid shutting down factories globally, the first shipment of the new equipment had been back ordered, finally arriving this month. Other shipments are expected soon, and Rusova says he is exploring additional donations from equipment suppliers as the league gears up for resumption of play in 2021.

Thomas Spolsky, HPLL VP and Board member welcomed the contribution. “The ongoing success of High Park Little League is all about the volunteers and alumni who have seen first-hand how much the kids gain from the experience,” says Spolsky, who recently met with the Rusova brothers at the clubhouse for the exchange. “It’s been a challenging year, but the new equipment will make returning to the field that much more special when baseball resumes.”