There are six rounds left in the 2020/21 VSBL Division 3 season with Springvale leading the way and Footscray not far behind.
Division 3 Firsts
North Western Titans 4 v Footscray Bulldogs 5
The Bulldogs scored first, taking a 2-0 lead into the third, although the Titans quickly got one back. By the middle of the fifth North Western led 3-2, and the Titans went on to score another in the seventh.
Footscray wasn't deterred, scoring three in the bottom of the eighth to seal the deal on their fourth win in five games.
Brittney Cedelland threw five innings for Footscray with six hits, one HBP, three runs, and three strikeouts. Abbey McLellan handled two innings with three hits, two strikeouts, and a run. Alexander Da Silva threw a scoreless inning with just one walk.
Connor Wilson hurled seven innings for North Western, striking out seven with two walks, a HBP, and two runs. Cameron Wilson threw 2/3 of an inning with three earned runs scoring on three hits and two walks, while Matthew Howe handled 1/3 of an inning.
McLellan, Asdrubal Jimenez, and Connor Anderson knocked in a run each for Footscray. Matt Martin doubled and singled, Jimenez had two base hits, and Joe Michaud, McLellan, Da Silva, and Anderson all singled.
Cameron Wilson plated two of North Western's runs with a pair of doubles while Howe had two base hits and an RBI. Luciano Castro also had two singles as Kyle Hodgetts, Jarrod Johns, and Connor Wilson had one single each.
Second-place Footscray has a 4-1 record on 51 runs for and 29 given up. North Western is one spot behind at 3-2 with 45 runs for and 31 against. North Western plays Chelsea and Footscray plays Bonbeach next.
Bonbeach Bluejays 5 v Pakenham Pumas 6
The Pumas scored four of their six runs in the first two innings while Bonbeach followed suit across the third and the fourth.
The 4-4 tie turned into a 5-5 ballgame by the end of the fifth and the last few innings were quiet until the Pumas broke through with the winning run in the bottom of the ninth.
Trent Job threw seven innings for Pakenham, giving up seven hits, one walk, three HBP, three earned runs, two unearned runs, and two strikeouts. Teammate Tim Bellerby handled the other two innings with no hits, just two walks and three strikeouts.
Daniel Conway-Jones covered six innings for Bonbeach with five hits, four strikeouts, and one run. Three earned runs and one unearned run scored during Dylan Brown's two innings on the mound as he gave up five hits and three walks with two strikeouts. Matt Bucci gave up one hit, one walk, and one run in an inning of work.
Pakenham's Scott Dale had three singles and two RBIs as Bellerby plated two with a pair of base hits. Mitchell Lording homered and singled as Darren Reeves, Jarrad Bell, and Job had one single each.
The Bonbeach offence was led by Bucci with three RBIs on a home run and a walk as Dylan Eldridge knocked in the other run. Mathew Prior doubled as Jarad Curwood and Conway-Jones had two base hits each. James Crowe singled as well.
After this game, Pakenham is 2-3 in fourth place on 31 runs for and 53 runs against. Bonbeach is one spot behind at 1-4 with 50 runs for and 42 against. Pakenham plays Springvale and Bonbeach plays Footscray next.
Chelsea Dolphins 0 v Springvale Lions 16
The unstoppable Lions needed just 68 pitches to seal the deal on this game, with only 12 balls and the rest strikes.
Despite some great plays from Chelsea's Matt Burton, the Dolphins were left behind with some fielding errors that allowed Springvale to score against Shannon Groenendyke.
Among the team's highlights were three sacrifice flies for Rydge Hogan, two singles and a double for Lucas Anderson, and a single and a double by Mark Richards. Adam Thatcher had two singles and two RBIs as Hogan, Neal Cavanagh and Scott Baillie had one hit each. Hogan knocked in four runs, Anderson and Cavanagh plated three and Baillie and Matthew Cameron had one apiece.
Springvale took six walks and three HBP on the day with the pitching staff not giving up any runs themselves. Baillie gave up two hits and one HBP with five strikeouts in three innings, while Cameron's three innings included three hits and a strikeout. Anderson struck out one in his solo inning.
5-0 Springvale has scored a total of 71 runs and given up just 16 so far this season with their first shutout win now under their belts. Springvale hosts Pakenham and Chelsea hosts North Western next.
Division 3 Seconds
North Western Titans 0 v Footscray Bulldogs 16
The Bulldogs ran wild on the base paths, racking up another big wind to complement their 19-10 win over Pakenham the week before.
The game started out relatively slow with Footscray scoring one in both the first and the second. The Bulldogs added another four in the third but the final fourth inning is when their bats really came alive, tacking on 10 runs.
Footscray has four wins and a draw with 61 runs for and 27 against, just behind Springvale in the standings. North Western has four losses and a draw as the Titans play Chelsea next and the Bulldogs play Bonbeach.
Chelsea Dolphins 2 v Springvale Lions 18
In another high-scoring matchup, the Lions kept up with their momentum from the week before when they won 25-1 over North Western.
This game saw Springvale exit the first inning with a 9-0 advantage, and by the end of the second it was a 14-1 ballgame. The Dolphins got one more in the third while the Lions added three and another in the fourth.
Springvale is in first place with four wins and a draw on 62 runs for and 12 against. Chelsea sits fifth with three wins and two draws on 22 runs for and 51 against. Chelsea hosts North Western and Springvale hosts Pakenham next.
Bonbeach Bluejays 16 v Pakenham Pumas 1
The Bluejays handed the Pumas their second straight loss following a late burst of offence.
Bonbeach was first on the board with five runs in the third, followed by seven in the fourth, one in the fifth, and three in the sixth. Pakenham's lone run came in the fifth.
After this big win, Bonbeach sits third with a 2-2-1 record on 45 runs for and 18 runs against. Fourth-place Pakenham is 2-3 having scored 42 and allowed 49. Bonbeach hosts Footscray and Pakenham visits Springvale next.