ST. GEORGE — The St. George Pioneerzz of the Western Baseball League will not be back next year, city and college officials said.

Dixie State College President Robert Huddleston said he recently received a letter from Pioneerzz president Pat Elster to that effect. The Pioneerzz played their home games at Dixie's Bruce Hurst Field.

Repeated attempts Tuesday and Wednesday to contact Elster and league president Bob Linscheid were unsuccessful.

After the 2001 season, Elster had approached officials with Dixie State and the city unsuccessfully seeking concessions. He said the team had lost $2 million in its three years.

Huddleston said Elster's letter saying the team would not return next season did not surprise him.

The team paid $38,000 a season to rent the college facilities, but Huddleston said the loss would not affect the collegiate budget.

"It was pretty much a break-even thing anyway," Huddleston said, adding that the field likely will be used by American Legion teams.

City spokesman Marc Mortensen said, "There's been nothing formal to the city. The only information that we've received is that they don't plan to return. We're sad to see them go. They brought some fun baseball to St. George.

"It comes down to a matter of being fair. We won't subsidize a business to stay," he said. "Hopefully, in the future, we can work something out so we can see some more baseball."