Lions, Bears show early form: Rams impress

Kingsley Collins

7 April 2018

Played in picture-perfect conditions at Geelong Baseball Centre – which was in pristine shape after 10 days of national competition – Opening Round of the GBA winter season produced its share of thrills and spills as eight clubs negotiated a massive day of A Grade doubleheaders.

 

With two big results, Guild began where it left off last season, while Bellarine won both of its contests along with Newport Rams – which will clearly be a threat after taking the step up from B Grade last time. Saints and Lara both managed a win apiece, while Mounties, Deakin and Colac battled manfully without yet registering a win.

Before launching into some doubleheader reporting – an amalgam of fact, probably some fiction and a little conjecture – let us extend a huge shout out to Geelong baseball interests who have been hard at it for the past couple of weeks in delivering a Baseball Victoria under-aged series followed by the Youth Women’s and Women’s National that ran for eight days concluding on Friday.

 

Just a fantastic, whole-hearted effort by the Saints and Guild clubs in particular. A real feather in the cap of local club people who continue to present the region and Geelong baseball in a wonderful light. Your effort, as it should, has again been widely acknowledged in our sporting community.

 

Well done, all!

 

GUILD 16 defeated DEAKIN 2

 

A scoreless first innings was the calm before the storm as the reigning premier took toll of a surfeit of free passes to put up an eight-spot in the second of what turned into something of a mismatch.

 

Dominant over three, Lions stalwart Brad Egan scattered four hits before handing the pill to Hayden Peoples to close out a contest for a Guild club that needed to muster just four hits to exploit its scoring opportunities – with Jarred Durston, Chris Durston, James Renouf and Tyler Luther-Wilson contributing two RBIs apiece as the Deakin defence faltered under pressure.

 

While Deakin youngsters Jake Warren and Sam Fraser will benefit from the pitching experience, the result was an ominous early message issued by Guild, which appears to have lost none of its appetite for success despite an extraordinary run over the past several years.

DEAKIN   0 0 0 2   (2)  4 errors

GUILD      0 8 4 4   (16)  2 errors

Hits.

Deakin: K.Greenhalgh, M.Belfrage, C.Webb, L.Strauch, A.Medew

Guild:   Jarryd Wood, C.Durston, H.Levy, T.Luther-Wilson

RBIs.

Deakin:   nil

Guild:   J.Durston 2, C.Durston 2, J.Renouf 2, T.Luther-Wilson 2, R.Stewart, J.Wood, H.Levy

Pitching.

Deakin: T.Kurganovs 1.1 inn, 1 H, 0 Ks, 5 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER

J.Warren 0.2 inn, 0 H, 0 Ks, 4 BB, 0 HPB, 7 ER

S.Fraser 2 inn, 3 H, 0 Ks, 7 BB, 2 HPB, 6 ER

Guild:   B.Egan 3 inn, 4 H, 5 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER

H.Peoples 1 inn, 1 H, 2 Ks, 0 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER

 

SAINTS 11 defeated COLAC 0

 

It was an ugly start for Colac on its long-awaited return to A Grade competition – although, to be fair, they were pitted against a more than handy operator in Saints starter Jonathon Mottay, a Williamstown import during summer season who whiffed ten in a stunning no-hitter over six innings.

 

While starter Brendan De Lorenzo, Josh Hay and Alex Lewis stuck to their guns on the hill for Colac, Saints used a full book of players in scoring in all of their five batting innings, with nine players of seventeen used making a contribution in offence – including teenager Cooper Rickard, who stroked his first senior hit.

 

Despite an injury, Trevor Elliott made a welcome return to the Sainters, who appear to have constructed a fair balance of experience and youth as they strive to improve on a disappointing season last time. For Colac, there will certainly be better days to come.

COLAC      0 0 0 0 0 0      (0)  3 errors

SAINTS     3  3  1  2  2 x     (11)  0 errors  

Hits.

Saints:   E.Rickard 2, T.Elliott, G.Carter, G.Polley, C.Rickard, D.Kirschner, C.Rickard, E.Gay, C.Hughes

Colac:   nil

RBIs.

Saints:   T.Elliott, E.Rickard, C.Rickard, D.Kirschner, E.Gay, C.Hughes

Colac:   nil

Pitching.

Colac:   B.de Lorenzo 2.2 inn, 3 H, 3 Ks, 5 BB, 3 HPB, 4 ER

J.Hay 1.1 inn, 2 H, 1 K, 0 NN, 2 HPB, 2 ER

A.Lewis 2 inn, 5 H, 2 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 4 ER

Saints:  J.Mottay 6 inn, 0 H, 10 Ks, 2 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER

 

BELLARINE 5 defeated LARA 1

 

Appearing down on key personnel on last season, Lara scored in the first and made a decent fist of their first-up outing against Bellarine, which called upon greybeard David Badger Morrissy to spin his off-speed offerings to effect.

 

Going the distance, Morrissey delivered for the Bears, who plated two in the third and tacked on insurance runs towards the end – thanks largely to the timely hitting of Lewis Weldon (two hits and two RBIs), Wayne Visser, Lachlan Stott and Tim Rankin.

 

Jarrod Fraim and the Arandt lads were among the most productive with the bat for Lara, which would be delighted with the start of Chris Lewis – who held the powerful Bears offence in check over six for a solitary earned run.

BELLARINE   0 0 2 0 0 1 2   (5)  1 error

LARA             1 0 0 0 0 0 0   (1)  1 error

Hits.

Bellarine:   L.Weldon 2, M.Sage, C.Brown, W.Visser, L.Stott, J.Auld, T.Rankin

Lara:   J.Fraim 2, S.Baumann, J.Berman, L.Arandt, T.Arandt

RBIs.

Bellarine:   L.Weldon 2, W.Visser, L.Stott, T.Rankin

Lara:   J.Fraim

Pitching.

Bellarine:   D.Morrissey 7 inn, 6 H, 2 Ks, 2 BB, 2 HPB, 0 ER

Lara:   Chris Lewis 6 inn, 4 H, 2 Ks, 3 BB, 3 HPB, 1 ER

D.Anson 1 inn, 1 H, 0 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER

 

NEWPORT 12 defeated MOUNTIES 9

 

With the first innings only completed after 55 minutes, this game threatened to take on epic proportions until the Mounties defence settled and the Newport pitching located the strike zone.

 

Relieving starter Jayde Thorne, Zac Seipolt was solid over three for the Rams, who restricted the Mounts to a handful of hits while their own big guns in Justin Charles (two hits and four RBIs), Troy Malthouse and Heath Black (two RBIs apiece) were able to get the better of an opponent that enjoyed terrific contributions from George Davidson (a hit and three RBIs), Scott Jones (one and two) and Jono Bramwell (two RBIs).

 

Plating four in the top of the last was crucial for the Rams, who withstood a gutsy last-gasp challenge by Mounties – who came up just short in an intriguing contest.

NEWPORT     7 1 0 4   (12)  1 error

MOUNTIES    6 1 0 2   (9)  6 errors

Hits.

Newport:   J.Charles 2, A.Green, J.Thorne, T.Malthouse, Z.Seipolt, H.Black, D.Marnell, L.Condie

Mounties:   M.Jones, H.Pfeiffer, S.Jones, G.Davidson, S.Best

RBIs.

Newport:   J.Charles 4, T.Malthouse 2, H.Black 2, L.Condie

Mounties:   G.Davidson 3, S.Jones 2, J.Bramwell 2, H.Pfeiffer, S.Best, G.Masterson

Pitching.

Newport:   J.Thorne 0 inn, 0 H, 0 Ks, 4 BB, 2 HPB, 6 ER

Z.Seipolt 4 inn, 4 H, 2 Ks, 2 BB, 1 HPB, 3 ER

Mounties:   S.Jones 3.1 inn, 7 H, 1 K, 3 BB, 0 HPB, 6 ER

G.Smith 0.2 inn, 1 H, 0 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER

 

BELLARINE 8 defeated DEAKIN 6

 

The Bears made it two from two with a narrow result over Deakin, which conceded six unearned runs in the first for a lead that ultimately proved too much to track down in a high-quality game that saw Blues starter Chris Webb go the distance.

 

While Webb applied the clamps after the early onslaught, Deakin struggled against Bears starter Josh Crotty before breaking out with a three-spot in the fifth as Glenn Morris (two hits and three RBIs), Andy Medew, Webb and a returning Pat Moulton generated the offence.

 

Cameron Brown (two hits and two RBIs) and Matt Taylor (two and two) were best with the stick for Bellarine, which called upon Pat Brackley to close out the game and post a second win for the day.

DEAKIN           0 0 1  1 3  0 1   (6)  2 errors

BELLARINE    8 0 0 0 0 0 x   (8)  1 error

Hits.

Deakin:   A.Medew 2, C.Webb 2, G.Morris 2, P.Moulton, R.Millard

Bellarine:   C.Brown 2, M.Taylor 2, P.Brackley, T.Rankin

RBIs.

Deakin:   G.Morris 3, C.Webb, R.Millard

Bellarine:   C.Brown 2, M.Taylor 2, P.Brackley, T.Rankin, A.Hockey

Pitching.

Deakin:   C.Webb 6 inn, 6 H, 5 Ks, 5 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER

Bellarine:   J.Crotty 3 inn, 2 H, 4 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER

M.Sage 1.2 inn, 3 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 1 HPB, 4 ER

P.Brackley 2.1 inn, 3 H, 4 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER

 

LARA 14 defeated COLAC 1

Subdued in offence earlier in the day, Lara broke out big-time in this contest, amassing fifteen hits and scoring in every batting innings to record a comprehensive win.

 

While veteran Colac hurler Michael Reid was consistently around the strike zone, he ran into tough offensive opposition in the form of Jared Berman (four hits and four RBIs), Cam Forbes (three and two), Ross Wilson (three and one) and Stuart Forbes.

 

Whiffing fourteen over six innings of work, Cam Forbes was at his irrepressible best before sibling Stuart closed out the game – between them conceding a miserly three hits, Nat Bannan being best for Colac with an RBI-single in the third.

COLAC     0 0 1 0 0 0 0    (1)   2 errors

LARA        1  2 1 3  4  3 x   (14)  2 errors

Hits.

Colac:   N.Bannan, T.Dixon, D.Morrissey

Lara:   J.Berman 4, C.Forbes 3, R.Wilson 3, S.Forbes 2, J.Fraim, D.Anson, J.Baumann

RBIs.

Colac:   N.Bannan

Lara:   J.Berman 4, C.Forbes 2, S.Forbes, S.Baumann, J.Fraim, R.Wilson, L.Arandt

Pitching.

Colac:   M.Reid 4 inn, 10 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 5 ER

J.Hay 3 inn, 5 H, 0 Ks, 4 BB, 0 HPB, 6 ER

Lara:   C.Forbes 6 inn, 2 H, 14 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER

S.Forbes 1 inn, 1 H, 0 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER

 

NEWPORT 9 defeated SAINTS 2

 

With power arms in Tayler Rowe (Saints) and Luke Abels (Newport) matched for this contest, most pundits would have expected a low-scoring defensive affair through the early innings.

 

Not to be, however, as the Rams plated one in the first and exploded in the top of the second as Troy Malthouse blasted a grand slam off Rowe after Saints had slipped up in defence to allow runners on.

 

While Sean Talbot and Emerson Rickard held the line after that outburst, Saints struggled for offensive production against Abels and then Tim Reid, who received superb offensive support from Malthouse (four RBIs), Aaron Green (three hits) and Justin Charles.

NEWPORT   1 6 1 1 0   (9)  1 error

SAINTS        0 0 0 2 0  (2)  4 errors

Hits.

Newport:   A.Green 3, J.Charles 2, J.Thorne, T.Malthouse (home run), Z.Seipolt, L.Condie

Saints:   G.Carter, D.Kirschner, G.Polley, C.Hughes, R.Charty, D.Teixeria

RBIs.

Newport:   T.Malthouse 4, J.Walshe, J.Thorne, J.Charles, Z.Seipolt

Saints:   G.Polley, D.Teixeria

Pitching.

Newport:   L.Abels 3 inn, 2 H, 4 Ks, 1 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER

T.Reid 2 inn, 4 H, 4 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER

Saints:   T.Rowe 2 inn, 4 H, 2 Ks, 2 BB, 1 HPB, 2 ER

S.Talbot 2 inn, 3 H, 2 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER

E.Rickard 1 inn, 1 H, 0 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER

 

GUILD 23 defeated MOUNTIES 0

 

Scoring heavily in each of its four batting innings, Guild played impeccable defence behind solid outings from Jarryd Wood and Stuart Barnes, who combined to concede eight hits – two apiece to Scott Jones and Glenn Masterson – but who were never threatened after posting crooked numbers early.

 

Surely in contention for player of the match, Wood collected three hits and drove in five of the Guild runs, although he had grand support in Chris Durston (three and four), Ryan Stewart (two and three), Jarred Durston (two and two) and Tyler Luther-Wilson – who capped a stellar Saturday with three knocks and four ribbies for his club.

 

Scoring 39 runs in its two games, Guild already appears ominous for the new season, although today’s opponents in Mounties and Deakin are clearly far better than scores might indicate as we move into the season proper – when anything might, and can happen.

MOUNTIES  0 0 0 0 0   (0)  5 errors

GUILD           5  7 5  6 x   (23)  0 errors

Hits.

Mounties:   S.Jones 2, G.Masterson 2, M.Collins, G.Smith, H.Pfeiffer, B.Jones

Guild:   Jarryd Wood 3, C.Durston 3, T.Luther-Wilson 3, J.Durston 2, R.Stewart 2, T.Snarey

RBIs.

Mounties:   nil

Guild:   J.Wood 5, C.Durston 4, T.Luther-Wilson 4, R.Stewart 3, J.Durston 2, S.Barnes 2, H.Levy, J.Renouf, T.Renouf

Pitching.

Mounties:   X.Woolley 1.2 inn, 4 H, 2 Ks, 7 BB, 2 HPB, 12 ER

G.Masterson 1.1 inn, 10 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 4 ER

Guild:   J.Wood 2 inn, 2 H, 2 Ks, 0 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER

S.Barnes 3 inn, 6 H, 1 K, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER

 

Scroll down for a selection of images from the A Grade doubleheader (NOTE:  GBA affiliate clubs are welcome to use any of these images for news updates, promotion or any other legitimate baseball purpose).

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