Round Five 2014

 ROUND FIVE:   Saturday 24 May
*** Scroll down for images from Ballarat this afternoon   ***

Free-scoring was the order of the day in A Grade contests decided this afternoon, with Guild shrugging off a lack-lustre Bellarine 14-2 and Bacchus Marsh dispensing with Deakin 11-2, while Ballarat Brewers blanked Corio 15-0 in a game mercifully called early and East Belmont posted its third win with a 9-3 result over Werribee.

Contrary to some predictions, it was a beautiful day across the region – weather wise – and spectators were treated to a feast of runs as the league’s dominant hitters turned up the heat. Each of the four winning A Grade sides would be well-pleased with their day out although, as we all know, you are only as good as your next game in this fickle sport of ours.

GUILD 14 defeated BELLARINE 2

In another powerful all-round performance, Guild called upon its entrenched skill levels to pound an experienced Bears outfit with an offensive assault that saw the home side scoring multiples in five of the six innings in which it went to the plate.

Bellarine starter Simon Murry was on the receiving end of early treatment before Josh Crotty accepted the poisoned chalice with the game well gone after four innings.

Tossing the complete game for Guild, Lee Harty scattered seven hits and complemented a fine outing with a couple of knocks of his own in a dominant team display led by Jarrod Durston (two hits and four RBIs), Ryan Stewart (three and three), Troy Snarey (three and one), Chris Durston and Jordan Lekkas.

Despite playing errorless defence, Bellarine was never in the contest and took until the top of seven to make a final, ineffectual statement that would not instil great confidence with another tough game to come next Saturday.

BELLARINE 0 0 0 0 0 0 2   (2)   0 errors
GUILD 2 3 0 3 3 3 x  (14)  2 errors
Bellarine: J.Crotty 2, B.McKentish, W.Visser, S.Murry, J.Lowe, C.Barker
Guild: T.Snarey 3, R.Stewart 3, J.Lekkas 2, J.Durston 2, L.Harty 2, H.Levy 2, C.Durston, J.Wood, J.Smyth
Bellarine: J.Crotty
Guild: J.Durston 4, R.Stewart 3, C.Durston 2, L.Harty 2, J.Lekkas, T.Snarey
Bellarine: S.Murry 4 inn, 10 H, 1 K, 2 BB, 4 HPB, 8 ER
  J.Crotty 2 inn, 7 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 6 ER
Guild: L.Harty 7 inn, 7 H, 5 Ks, 3 BB, 1 HPB, 1 ER
BALLARAT 15 defeated CORIO 0

The Brewers strengthened their grip on second placing with a thumping win over Corio in a game that was decided in ninety minutes in perfect playing conditions at Prince of Wales Reserve.

Hitting in the two-hole, Ballarat starter Ross Hipke set the tone of the game with a run-scoring triple in a productive first inning that yielded five runs for the home club, which went scoreless in the second before smashing ten in the next of a contest that was mercifully called after five.

Between them scattering a miserly three hits, Hipke and closer Cameron Smith were terrific for the Brew Crew, which again smacked the ball hard and often against a gallant, albeit undermanned Corio pitching staff.

Stroking two doubles in a three from three outing, Ryan Evan drove in four of the Ballarat runs, with other grand contributions being offered by Smith (two hits and two RBIs), Hipke (one and two), Alan Collins (one and two), Scott Kerr (two and one) and Steve Kugele (two and one).

With the bye next week, Corio will go to the break winless, while Ballarat – with four of its starting nine expected to be missing – will face a daunting road trip to the Bears of Wallington next Saturday.  

CORIO 0 0 0 0 0     (0)  1 error
BALLARAT 5 0 10 0 x  (15)  1 error
Corio: J.Hughes, J.Addlem, A.Flowers
Ballarat: R.Evans 3, C.Smith 2, S.Kerr 2, S.Kugele 2, R.Hipke, L.Ashmore, R.Meddick, A.Collins
Corio: nil
Ballarat: R.Evans 4, R.Hipke 2, A.Collins 2, C.Smith 2, L.Ashmore, S.Kugele, S.Kerr, R.Meddick
Corio: S.Brackley 2 inn, 4 H, 3 Ks, 3 BB, 5 ER
  P.Brackley 1 inn, 8 H, 0 K, 2 BB, 10 ER
  J.Hughes 1 inn, 1 H, 0 K, 0 BB, 0 ER
Ballarat: R.Hipke 4 inn, 3 H, 4 Ks, 1 BB, 0 ER
  C.Smith 1 inn, 0 H, 1 K, 0 BB, 0 ER

An important game for the season prospects of both clubs, this turned into a one-sided contest when the Tigers surged to an eleven zip break after three innings as Deakin starter Chris Webb struggled for control.

An ugly third innings did the early damage, with five walks, a hit batter and an error conspiring with a couple of hits to glean four for the visitors, followed up immediately by a six-spot – on some clean hitting - before the Blues called upon Kelii Zablan to apply the clamps.

And that he did, whiffing seven over a scoreless six innings stint after the initial damage had been done. But even with a couple of runs in the fifth, it was too little, too late for the Deakin offence, which struggled for production against winning pitcher Roland Shaw (seven innings for the two earned runs) before Manager Earl Byrne chimed in for the save.

While Zablan posted a couple of knocks for the Blues, Lewis Weldon, Jarrod Warwick, Dan Wilkie and Chris Porter were ever-dangerous for the Tigers, who have moved to third and take a head of steam into next Saturday’s pivotal clash with Guild Lions.

BACCHUS 0 1 4 6 0 0 0 0 0  (11)  3 errors
DEAKIN 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0   (2)   4 errors
Bacchus: L.Weldon 2, S.Hornstra, E.Byrne, D.Wilkie, C.Porter, J.Warwick
Deakin: K.Zablan 2, W.Balzer, T.Webb, R.Hickey
Bacchus: J.Warwick 3, L.Weldon 2, J.Norquay 2, C.Porter 2, D.Wilkie
Deakin: K.Zablan 2
Bacchus: R.Shaw 7 inn, 5 H, 8 Ks, 1 BB, 2 ER
  E.Byrne 2 inn, 0 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 0 ER
Deakin: C.Webb 3 inn, 5 H, 3 Ks, 6 BB, 1 HPB, 5 ER
  K.Zablan 6 inn, 2 H, 7 Ks, 0 BB, 0 ER
SAINTS 9 defeated WERRIBEE 3

This was an important win for East Belmont, which edges ahead of Lara and stays well in touch with the leaders, while Werribee has dropped off the pace despite some very promising outings.

With two in the first, the Giants were set back on their heels as Saints levelled the score in the equaliser and forged ahead with four in the third, followed by another three in the fifth to effectively place the game beyond reach as Saints starter Josh Lee applied the clamps after a slow start.

Out-hitting their opponent ten to eight, Saints had solid contributors in Luke Sherwell (two hits and two RBIs), Ash Hoe (one and two), Coleby Alldis (one and two), Kurt Wilson and Gerard Carter (both with two hits), while Simon Riches, John Curnow and Daine Gregory were best with the stick for Werribee.

Saints will face the acid test with an away game against Lara next Saturday, while Werribee plays host to Deakin in what should be a tight game between evenly-matched combatants.

WERRIBEE 2 0 0 0 0 0 1  (3)  4 errors
SAINTS 2 0 4 0 3 0 x  (9)  1 error
Werribee: S.Riches 2, J.Curnow 2, D.Gregory 2, E.McPherson, A.Christou
Saints: K.Wilson 2, L.Sherwell 2, G.Carter 2, T.Elliott, A.Hoe, C.Alldis, T.Huisman
Werribee: J.Curnow 2, D.Gregory
Saints: A.Hoe 2, L.Sherwell 2, C.Alldis 2
Werribee: D.Hartigan 5 inn, 9 H, 6 Ks, 3 BB, 6 ER
Saints: J.Lee 5.2 inn, 2 H, 11 Ks, 2 BB, 0 ER
  S.Talbot 1.1 inn, 3 H, 2 Ks,1 BB, 1 ER
LARA had the A Grade bye this week