Leaders remain deadlocked: Saints draw closer
16 June 2018
Edging past the halfway point of the season and we are reminded that this is indeed winter baseball – with an Antarctic blast delivering damp, blustery conditions across the league and causing the cancellation of junior games on Saturday morning.
Standings-wise there was no change after Round Nine in A Grade, where Newport was too strong for Mounties and Guild enjoyed a comfortable win over Deakin, while Bellarine – sparked by a Brock Wells grand slam - turned on the offence in two blistering innings to crush Lara and Saints edged closer in fifth spot by downing Colac in a clash shortened marginally by bad light.
GUILD 9 defeated DEAKIN 5
One of three clubs currently setting the A Grade pace, Guild was on the board early – with Jarryd Wood scoring on a sacrifice fly in the first before productive third and fourth innings that stretched the lead to half a dozen against a Deakin offence that was well-contained by Lions starter Brad Egan.
It was only in the sixth that the Deakin bats came alive, compliments of a two-RBI single by Matt Belfrage – although the home side replied with a three-run equaliser as eight hitters headed to the plate against Deakin southpaw Chris Webb, who put in another lion-hearted complete game.
With his side facing a massive deficit, Pat Moulton swatted a three-run homer in the top of the last to deliver some respectability to the Blues scoreline, although the assignment proved too much against a Guild outfit that had outstanding contributors in Harry Levy (who went four from four in the seven hole), Jarryd Wood (three hits and two RBIs), Ryan Stewart (three and two) and Tony Kilfoyle (one and two).
While Moulton (three RBIs) and Andy Medew (two hits and an RBI) were productive for Deakin, the Blues struggled for production against Egan, who whiffed ten over six innings of work – for two earned runs – before Jarrod Durston finished the job for Guild.
Deakin will be away to Lara next Saturday, while Guild will cross the creek to meet Saints, who will be well aware of the importance of that game in the context of their season.
DEAKIN 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 (5) 1 error
GUILD 1 0 2 3 0 3 x (9) 1 error
Deakin: A.Medew 2, K.Greenhalgh, M.Rigby, P.Moulton (home run), M.Belfrage
Guild: H.Levy 4, Jarryd Wood 3, R.Stewart 3, J.Durston, T.Kilfoyle, C.Durston, T.Luther-Wilson
Deakin: P.Moulton 3, A.Medew, C.Lyons
Guild: Jarryd Wood 2, R.Stewart 2, T.Kilfoyle 2, J.Durston, T.Snarey
Deakin: C.Webb 6 inn, 14 H, 0 K, 3 BB, 0 HPB, 8 ER
Guild: B.Egan 6 inn, 3 H, 10 Ks, 3 BB, 2 HPB, 2 ER
J.Durston 1 inn, 3 H, 2 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 3 ER
NEWPORT 11 defeated MOUNTIES 3
Coming off two losses, Newport posted what in the end was a comfortable win over the Mounts – though they certainly did not have it their own way in the early innings.
After replying to a first innings Newport score, Mounties squared the ledger in the top of the second and edged ahead with another two in the third before the Rams constructed three multi-run frames on the trot to put the game beyond reach of the visitors.
Spinning three innings of work for two earned runs, the versatile Aaron Green (two hits and three RBIs) was a standout with the bat for Newport, along with Zac Seipolt (two and three), Heath Black (two and two), Jayde Thorne (home run for three ribbies) and Reece Longstaff (two hits).
Enjoying a solid all-round game for Mounties, much-improved starter Gavin Smith (three innings) collected three knocks and was influential in offence for his club along with Brad Jones and George Davidson, although there was not much else doing as David Asp and Jason Lester slammed the gate for Newport’s ninth win of the season.
Both clubs will be away next Saturday, with Newport making the road trip to Colac and Mounties venturing out to Wallington Reserve to match up with an in-form Bellarine Bears.
MOUNTIES 0 1 2 0 0 0 (3) 1 error
NEWPORT 1 0 3 4 3 x (11) 1 error
Mounties: G.Smith 3, B.Jones 2, J.Miller, S.Best, T.Hardy
Newport: R.Longstaff 2, A.Green 2, Z.Seipolt 2, H.Black 2, T.Malthouse, J.Thorne (home run), M.Wray
Mounties: G.Davidson 2, S.Jones
Newport: A.Green 3, Z.Seipolt 3, J.Thorne 3, H.Black 2
Mounties: G.Smith 3 inn, 6 H, 2 Ks, 6 BB, 0 HPB, 6 ER
M.Collins 2 inn, 5 H, 0 K, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 4 ER
Newport: A.Green 3 inn, 5 H, 4 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER
D.Asp 2 inn, 3 H, 2 K, 0 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER
J.Lester 1 inn, 0 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER
BELLARINE 16 defeated LARA 6
With several of its players in prominent form at the Winter Championship last weekend, Bellarine exploded to an early lead, when lead-off Chris Barker doubled and Cameron Brown left the yard for a two-run shot in the bottom of the first.
Hitting back with two of its own in the second and again in the third, the Wildcats would have been on pretty good terms with themselves until the Bears sprung from relative hibernation to blast seven in the fourth – on six hits, a sacrifice bunt and a sac fly – and six more in the fifth, four of those by way of a Brock Wells grand slam.
While errors were a factor for the Lara defence, both starter Chris Lewis and reliever Dan Anson were put to the sword by a belligerent Bellarine offence headed by Wells (three hits – including the salami – for five RBIs), Brown (two and three), Matt Sage (three and two), Jack Auld (two and two), Lewis Weldon (two and one), Barker and Lachlan Hockey.
Ben Hammer (two hits and two RBIs), Anson (two and one) and Jarrod Fraim (two hits) were best with the bat for Lara, which was held in check by Josh Crotty and Pat Brackley on the hill for Bellarine.
Bellarine will be at home to Mounties next Saturday and Lara while be looking for its third win when it plays host to a hot and cold Deakin Blues.
LARA 0 2 2 0 0 2 0 (6) 6 errors
BELLARINE 2 0 0 7 6 1 x (16) 2 errors
Lara: B.Hammer 2, J.Fraim 2, D.Anson 2, C.Forbes, Chris Lewis
Bellarine: B.Wells 3 (inc grand slam), M.Sage 3, C.Barker 2, C.Brown 2 (inc home run), L.Weldon 2, J.Auld 2, L.Hockey, L.Stott, C.Hockey
Lara: B.Hammer 2, D.Anson, Clinton Lewis, M.McConnell
Bellarine: B.Wells 5, C.Brown 3, L.Hockey 2, M.Sage 2, J.Auld 2, L.Weldon, L.Stott
Lara: Chris Lewis 4 inn, 10 H, 1 K, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 9 ER
D.Anson 2 inn, 7 H, 2 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 4 ER
Bellarine: J.Crotty 5.2 inn, 7 H, 0 K, 3 BB, 0 HPB, 5 ER
P.Brackley 1.1 inn, 1 H, 1 K, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER
SAINTS 11 defeated COLAC 3
Although depleted by the loss of key players for this game, Saints kept its post-season hopes alive with a comfortable win over the Braves in a contest that lost twenty minutes through poor light.
A Steven Fox RBI-double handed Saints a lead in the first – one that was built upon when starting pitcher Connor Hughes left the yard with a solo shot in the second.
Hitting back with a run of its own, Colac was rocked by a six-run third from the visitors that was constructed around four hits and three walks that saw the Braves call upon Michael Reid in support of starter Alex Lewis.
Matching blows with two runs apiece in the fourth, the combatants were forced to an early finish in fading light, although the result was pretty much a foregone conclusion after that one big Saints innings.
A key factor for Saints, Hughes complemented his three hits (for three RBIs, including the home run) with three innings on the hill and he was well supported by Jarrod Hosking (safe hit, two ribbies) and Fox in an increasingly youngish haloes squad that outplayed a Colac outfit which could muster just five hits.
At home again next Saturday, Colac will take on the might of Newport Rams – one of the clear flag contenders – while Saints would dearly love to engineer an upset when it plays host to Guild.
SAINTS 2 1 6 2 (11) 2 errors
COLAC 0 1 0 2 (3) 2 errors
Saints: C.Hughes 3, J.Hosking, L.Sherwell, M.Ernstzen, S.Fox, R.Charry, C.Rickard
Colac: M.Reid, B.Delorenzo, A.Lewis, S.Mai, D.Morrissy
Saints: C.Hughes 2, J.Hosking 2, S.Fox, R.Charty, C.Rickard
Colac: D.Morrissy, J.Belcombe, D.Billings
Saints: C.Hughes 3 inn, 5 H, 3 Ks, 5 BB, 0 HPB, 3 ER
T.Elliott 1 inn, 0 H, 1 K, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER
Colac: A.Lewis 2.1 inn, 4 H, 0 K, 6 BB, 0 HPB, 8 ER
M.Reid 1.2 inn, 5 H, 0 K, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER
League-leading Bellarine smashed cellar-dweller Lara 12-2 in A RESERVE, while Guild Lions moved into second with a 13-3 win over equal fourth-placed Deakin, sending Guild Cubs back to third after it was downed 13-5 by Saints – who are now just head-to-head in fourth behind Deakin – while Newport improved its stocks in sixth placing with a 17-2 result over Mounties.