The 2019 Senior State Winter Championships wrapped up this afternoon at Geelong Baseball Centre, with Ringwood and Dandenong prevailing with huge wins! Well done to all participants on making this tournament so memorable! Catch up with the highlights from today's seven games below:
Dandenong vs. Ringwood
2nd Place Pool B vs. 1st Place Pool A
Ringwood continued to dominate the tournament with a high-powered victory over Dandenong, thanks in large part to 4 RBI's from Darryl George and fantastic pitching from Wes De Jong.
Dandenong kept Ringwood at bay through the third inning, when the scoring started as Mitch Ley stole home. Dandenong escaped with just one run given up, and they answered in the next frame, taking advantage of a costly error and securing a 2-1 lead. The Ringwood lineup wasn't satisfied with that result, and they made that clear in the top of the fourth when they put on 13 runs.
Jordan Young, Darryl George, Ryan Dale, Andrew Gibbens and Kelli Zablan smashed the ball in the inning, with George sending a two-run homer over the fence. With Wes De Jong holding steady on the mound, Dandenong couldn't turn things around. Ringwood headed into the final game with an undefeated record for the tournament.
North Eastern vs. Diamond Valley
3rd Place Pool B vs. 4th Place Pool A
After wrapping up day 2 with a spectacular comeback over Geelong, North Eastern headed into this game determined to do the same. Unfortunately for them, they let Diamond Valley on the board early and they couldn't bounce back.
Diamond Valley's fiery lineup was up and about early, tallying five runs in the first. A single from Slade Squire put the first run on the board, and Zak Skinner doubled to left to bring home two more runs. Marc Sandy collected 2 RBI's on a single to bring their lead to 5-0. North Eastern couldn't put together much of a response in the next frame, and Diamond Valley kept on rolling with another single from Squire, increasing their advantage to 7-0.
North Eastern had runners in scoring position in the top of the third, but they struggled to get them across, and the game quieted down for a few frames. Home Run Derby standout Sam Kennelly sent a two-run blast over the fence in the bottom of the fourth.
While that would be the last of Diamond Valley's scoring, they couldn't hang on to their 9-0 shutout. North Eastern hopped on the board in the fifth with a two-run homer from Brendan Simmons. Two more runs wouldn't be enough to catch up, as Diamond Valley secured their spot in the Pool A final.
Latrobe Valley vs. Geelong
4th Place Pool B vs. 3rd Place Pool A
Latrobe Valley struggled on the mound and at the plate as Geelong cruised to a huge win. Tacking on four runs in the first and 14 in the second, Geelong enjoyed an exhilarating morning with 18 hits up and down the lineup. Tyler Lutheran-Wilson had three hits and Lachlan Stott managed three as well with 5 RBI's on a double and two singles. Brock Wells, Matt Sage, Hayden Peoples and Kobe Greenhaugh also collected RBI's. Wells his two inside the park home runs in a massive day with the bat.
Latrobe Valley's pitchers couldn't keep Geelong at bay, while a victorious Mitch Collins pitched well, with five innings of scoreless ball with five hits allowed. Will Hector had two hits in the game for Latrobe Valley, while Tim Bellerby, Jordy Gilmore and Brad Jones each had one apiece.
Sunraysia vs. City
1st Place Pool B vs. 2rd Place Pool A
Sunraysia held on for a hard-fought win over City, thanks to a late score. City started the game off right, putting one run on the board, but they gave up two in the bottom of the inning as Sunraysia took a 2-1 lead.
An easy 1-2-3 top of the second brought Sunraysia back up in the bottom frame, when they extended their advantage to 3-1. Needing to pick up the pace, City got one back on an RBI single from Jake Sinclair. The game quieted down until the bottom of the fifth, when Hayden Carroll had a fly ball single to make it 4-2 in Sunraysia's favour.
Needing some action at the plate, City answered in the top of the sixth, leveling the score with a two-run line drive hit to Wilmer Castillo. Sunraysia's Morgan Ruchel broke the tie with a blazing triple before stealing home in the bottom of the sixth, much to the excitement of his teammates. Sunraysia headed into the final with just one loss and four wins.
North Eastern vs. Latrobe Valley
3rd Place Pool B vs. 4th Place Pool B
It was an absolute run fest on diamond 3 as both sides refused to give up without a fight. Latrobe Valley led for much of the game before North Eastern tried to close the gap. A five-run first had Latrobe Valley feeling good, with hits from Will Hector, Josh Graham, Gregg Duncan and an inside the park home run for Joel Hector!
Although North Eastern got one back on an RBI double by Ashley Borella, Latrobe Valley kept things moving, tacking on six unanswered runs in the second and the third. Back-to-back inside the park home runs for Will Hector and Jordy Gilmore did some serious damage. North Eastern managed to make it 11-4 in the bottom of the third, with Damon Barker, Tom Simmons, Borella, Heath Anders and Nathan Pool all collecting hits in the inning.
Gilmore continued his impressive day at the plate with an RBI triple to right in the top of the fourth. By the time North Eastern recorded three outs, Latrobe Valley was up 13-5. Dylan Eldridge joined in the RBI fun with a single to score Joel Hector in the fifth.
Sitting at 14-5, things were looking good for Latrobe Valley heading into the last two innings, but North Eastern had a few surprises in store. They would go on to add four runs in the bottom of the fifth, with David Ivic leading the charge on a big single that scored two runs.
Now 14-9, Latrobe Valley added two more to pad their lead, with a triple from Tim Bellerby and a single from Gregg Duncan. North Eastern recorded another four in the bottom frame, but they couldn't quite close the gap to win their final game of the 2019 Senior State Winter Championships.
Sunraysia vs. Dandenong
1st Place Pool B vs. 2nd Place Pool B
After dominating Pool B all weekend long, Sunraysia slipped in the final game. With several injuries, the Sunraysia side struggled to keep up as Dandenong sprinted to a late lead.
The first two innings were quiet, with Dandenong getting on base but failing to score. The game shifted in the top of the third, when Dandenong put up four runs on hits from Mitch Sheldon-Collins, Nicholas Coy, Jon Ballantyne and Scott Baillie. Back-to-back singles helped Sunraysia put one run on the board in the bottom of the third.
Dandenong continued to test Sunraysia's pitching staff with two more hits in the top of the fourth. Sunraysia's Andrew Law and Ty Boromeo helped their team come within one run in the bottom of the fourth. Sunraysia took the lead for a moment in the bottom of the fifth thanks to Morgan Ruchel's single and a sacrifice fly from Taylar Pay to score the go-ahead run.
Dandenong regained their lead and made it 6-5 in the sixth as Nicholas Coy hit an RBI single. Sunraysia's offense seemed to run out of steam as Dandenong's defense and pitcher Sheldon-Collins buckled down and got the job done.
Scott Baillie, Nicholas Coy and Rhys Bumpstead all had doubles in the top of the seventh to add to their advantage. Dandenong had 15 hits in the game compared to Sunraysia's 7.
Congratulations to Dandenong on prevailing as the 2019 Senior State Winter Championships Pool B winners, and well done to Sunraysia on a fantastic tournament.
Ringwood vs. Diamond Valley
1st Place Pool A vs. 2nd Place Pool A
This undefeated Ringwood side showed no signs of slowing down as they smashed the ball on Diamond 1. Mitch Kennedy knocked in four runs, while Darryl George and Leigh Bertrand had 3 RBI's and 2 RBI's, respectively.
With Kelli Zablan on the mound, Ringwood looked to shut Diamond Valley down early, and they succeeded by putting up seven in the first to make it 7-1. This offensive onslaught included a two-run home run for Darryl George and a three-run blast from Mitch Kennedy.
Diamond Valley went down 1-2-3 in the top of the second before Ringwood tacked on another run in the bottom half. A single from Sam Kennelly made the score 8-3, but Ringwood's hard hitting was far from over. The third inning saw Leigh Bertrand hit a single and Kelli Zablan send one over the fence to compliment his stellar pitching performance.
When Diamond Valley's Slade Squire came to the plate in the fourth, he connected on a 2-1 pitch for a huge home run. They were able to get one more, bringing the score to 10-5. That would be it for Diamond Valley offensively, as Ringwood went on to add three more, including another homer, this this from Bertrand.
Congratulations to Ringwood on winning the 2019 Senior State Winter Championships in Pool A!