A very significant week in our VOB history with the news that VOB member and stalwart VOB family member, Brent Beier had lost his battle with Motor Neuron Disease (MND) at the young age of 37 years old. This really hit many members very hard this week, but in the usual VOB spirit, it also showed that this is a FAMILY. VOB has come together, as a club, over the past few months to assist the Beier’s in their time of need and I must say THANK YOU to every single person in this wonderful club.
And, as fate may have it, we were home to our derby rivals Athlone A’s, a team that Boere fought many battles against over the years. A more fitting fixture we could not have asked for.
Our senior first team ladies had no fixture, but our second team and youth were back at City Park, one of the venues that softball will be using while they recover from the vandalising of softball home, Turfhall stadium.
On to the weekend’s games!!
PeeWees vs A’s – Result: not important
Peewees played A’s and won comfortably 18 – 6. The diamond started the first frame with brilliant fielding, finding the bases with ease. A’s had players playing for the first season and they struggled to hit in the gaps. Our peewees went to bat and scored 9 runs in the first frame. Rustem De Bruyn was our lead off batter and his batting has improved significantly. Caleb Abrahams was the outstanding player of the day with brilliant hitting and fielding. Thanks you parents for your support. Well done peewees.
U10’s vs A’s – Result: 28-12 (VOB)
The U10’s played A’s and beat them 28-12. I must thank the parents for their support. The boys started the first frame with excellent fielding limiting their opponents to only 3 runs. They then went to bat and scored 8 runs. The batters cleared the diamond with ease and scored runs throughout the game. Caleb Bell played at second base and took 2 brilliant catches and hit 2 homeruns. Nur Scello was also outstanding at 3rd base, fielding and taking catches, he also hit 2 homeruns. Talun Davis, Chad Pastoor and Cayden Williams also hit homeruns. My player of the day was Caleb Abrahams for his quick thinking and knowledge of reading plays and for 3 brilliant catches at pitcher. What a player for me to have in a game and for a six-year-old with talent like this makes the game interesting for baseball. Well done boys for a good win.
U12’s vs A’s – Result: 11-6 (A’s)
After last week’s close game, VOB u12’s where hoping to bag their first win. Unfortunately, this was not to be as VOB got off to a slow start. It was only later in the game that we could get a few base runners on and score a few runs. Lots of place for improvement but well done to these awesome guys for their determination every week.
With 4 games played and 4 runs being scored in each of the first 2 games and 6 runs in the 3rd and another 6 in the 4th game, we hope that this weekend we see 8 runs and possibly our first W.
U14 Softball – VOB vs Lavender Hill – Result: 15-6 (L/Hill)
We have a good team but Lavender Hill have a few exceptional players, including two pitchers who throw with pace. While we matched them in the first, it was just a matter of time before they pulled away. Mercedes and Nawaar were the only hitters to make good contact, though we drew many walks.
Jesse continued to improve behind the plate, most of our other players wilting under the pressure.
U15 Senior Sluggers vs A’s – Result: 17-6 (A’s)
What should have been a relatively easy game turned into a nightmare from a pitching perspective. Having to use a total of 6 pitchers in the game we were always on the back foot in this game. Shakeel Jattiem tried his best to contain the opposition in his stint throwing 56 pitches in 3 innings and thereby claiming the player of the day award. A big concern is the boys mental approach as they were beaten when they saw a big Taariq Adams throwing for Athlone. The boys need to realise that one player does not determine the outcome of the game and that if they are going lose focus because of a mental issue, then they have already lost the game. With pitchers struggling, a lot of walks were handed to Athlone, and they magically managed to find all the holes in the field when they did hit. Despite losing this one 17 – 6, the boys spirits were still high which is a good sign that they can be humble in victory and gracious in defeat.
U15 Young Guns vs Devonshire Rovers – Result: 5-4 (VOB)
Our very inexperienced Young Guns are proving that fun and learning will get them to enjoy the game and eventually to win more than they lose.
This weekend we had THREE girls in one team for the first time in a very long time with Kelly Johnson, Jade November and Madison Blows taking on the boys on an equal footing.
Young Josh November again did pitching duties and his arm will grow stronger with each outing from the senior distance. He was replaced by Nicholas Jeffries who also is growing in confidence from the senior pitching distance.
Young Hilton Coenraad at 3B is an absolutely raw talent who runs like the wind and looks like he throws stones the entire day. Keep an eye out for him in the future.
Even though we were in the lead when the umpire wanted to call the game, we decided that we had enough time to let the kids play more. The more they play the more they learn. In the end the extra inning was still not enough for Rovers to catch up and we ran out 5-4 winners. Well done boys and girls!!
U18’s vs A’s – Result: 11-2 (VOB)
Tight pitching, well worked walks backed by power hitting, and aggressive base running saw VOB U18’s put up a dominant performance against traditional rivals Athlone A’s.
A ground ball out at 3rd and sweet 6 – 4 – 3 double play closed out the A’s first batting turn with no runs scored. Leadoff Luke November and Luke Budler, at #2, then did their jobs, scoring off two walks, from drives by Jordyn Riffel and an Alex Japhta double. 0 – 2. A’s clawed one back as our middle infield struggled with the ball coming slower off the heavier than normal grass after last week’s rain. Aggressive, forcing running saw Liam Willenberg and Keegan Hickley scoring, and doubles by Jesse Johnson a Alex Japhta (again) saw VOB to the 5 run compulsory innings close as Haydn Abrahams, Luke and Budler crossed. 1 – 7. A walk and a throwing error saw A’s get another run back. VOB quickly answered with two runs as Luke’s drive scored Keegan and Haydn. 2 – 9.
Southpaw Kian Africa was stingy on the mound, closing out A’s in top of the 4th and 5th scoreless, assisted by a 4 – 3 double play. Haydn and Luke crossed for their 3rd runs of the game in the bottom of the 5th, as Budler crushed a double to left field, and Jesse then closed out the game. 2 – 11.
Overall the team showed purpose and focus, playing forward and building momentum, but missing signs is becoming a bit of a habit.
Batting: Alex Japhta 2 – 3, (2 doubles), 3 rbi; Jesse Johnson 1 – 3 (1 x double), 2 rbi’s, 1 bb; Luke November 1 – 3, 2 rbi’s, 3 runs scored; Luke Budler 1 – 3 (1 double), 2 rbis, 1 bb, 2 runs scored; Haydn Abrahams 0 – 0, 3 bb, 3 runs scored; Keegan Hickley 0 – 0, 2 bb, 2 runs scored;.
Pitching: Johannes 3 innings, 0 K’s, 1 hit, 2 bb, 1 hpb, 2 runs, 0 earned; Kian Africa (W) 2 innings, 2 K’s, 0 hits, 1 bb; Jesse 1 inning, 2 K’s, 1 bb
Thanks to Kevin Mullins and Raees for umpiring.
Senior baseball teams
Masters vs Silvertree – Result: 12-4 (VOB)
It started with both teams wearing black bands in remembering our great friend Brent Boere Beier. Never to be forgotten. Ruan was the pitcher on the day and made Silvertree hitters look very average with a great pitching performance. Their pitchers on the other hand speedwise you can compare to Wayne Ripepis running. You get slow then you get that speed. Some nice hitting by most of the guys and solid baserunning for a change. Highlight of the day was Wayne Ripepi stealing to 2nd on an overthrow and getting safe. Yes, you heard me correctly. Other than that a game was played in good spirit although with a little sadness in our hearts. We still managed to have fun and loads of laughter.
MLR vs A’s – Result: 5-3 (A’s)
VOB hosted Athlone in this Major League Reserve game. VOB started with Canadian new recruit Andy Orfanakos on mound. He started well keeping “The A’s” scoreless in the first inning. They countered with Yusuf Galant on the mound and kept VOB scoreless in the first inning as well.
Athlone got on the board first and took a 2-0 lead as Andy battled with his location a bit and was replaced on the mound by Josh Rich in the third inning. Josh pitched well but hitting 4 batters and a few fielding errors allowed Athlone to accumulate a few more runs while VOB only managed 3 runs going into the bottom of the last inning.
With the bottom of the VOB order up, it was a tough ask of the youngsters. Athlone managed to get the first out before VOB got a runner on base. Then some confusion on the bases led to a double play, which ended the match 5-3 to Athlone.
It was a disappointing loss but a good game. Top performers on the day were Raees Haron, Josh Rich and Lee van Wyk. The mistakes were once again the difference between the sides, but with all the new faces, it will take some time before the team becomes consistent and put in more results like that of last week.
ML vs A’s – Result: 11-8 (VOB)
The emotion in this game was palpable from the outset. With Brent Beier’s number on our arms and his playing jersey hanging in the dugout, this one was always going to be about Boere.
Michael Scritten (VOB) opposed A’s lefty Cameron Fortuin which was “strange” as both are ex-crusaders pitchers. Scritten (4.2 inn, 4ER) kept a tight rein on A’s, but could not stop them A’s from taking a 6-0 lead by the 5th inning. Fortuin (3.1 inn, 0 ER) was the complete opposite in that, although he allowed regular runners on, kept VOB from scoring by making crucial pitches to stop runs from being scored.
A’s were the first to make a pitching change bringing on SA pitcher Dean Jacobs in the 4th inning and that’s when the Macaws started their comeback. In 1.2 innings the Macaws scored 6ER’s before A’s called in their evergreen ace, Carl Michaels, to stem the tide. Michaels tried his best, but the Macaws smelt blood and, by the time Michaels had settled, it was too late. VOB took the opportunity to make a change of their own giving the ball to Jayde Thorne who pitched superbly from there and took the win.
Lee Marks made a welcome return to the game after his horrific car accident last season, but he struggled mightily striking out 4 times before being lifted – welcome back Lee. Best hitters for A’s were Dillon Daniels (4/5) and PJ Abrahams (2/3).
Best hitters for VOB were Paul Bell (4/4, BB), Luke November (1/2, 2B, Rbi) and Jody Burch (2/5, 2B) getting his first hits of the season.
Good overall performance by VOB showing character to come back after being down 6-0.
Player of the game was Paul Bell.
Senior softball teams
SL vs ON BYE
2nd vs St Augustines – Result: 18-4 (VOB)
Six available players at eight became ten at one. Thanks to Chiamaka, Tracey, Iman, and Alex, who came to the party at personal inconvenience.
Now to the game, a continuation of our dominance over most of the teams in this league. Doni and later Hannah, kept their hitters quiet, Alex catching confidently. Some recurring jitters in handling run-down situations was our only problems.
Though some of our less experienced players still have difficulties with pitch selection, we generally hit strongly against their consistent but slow pitcher. Our long-ball hitters were on song, Tracey, Doni, Terri, and Hannah hitting long home runs. The latter also smacked a triple. And Iman, her eleven years matching Alex’s debut last season, came into the game with assurance, driving the ball well, running the bases confidently, and scoring two runs.
And ….. to repeat yet again, we desperately need a manager and another coach so that the senior teams can be properly prepared.
Anniversaries, birthdays, etc.
Josh and Jade November (5/11), Yusuf Daniels (5/11), Hayden Abrahams (6/11 and Alex Japhta (9/11) all celebrate birthdays this week. Congratulations from the VOB family and we do love cake – just saying.
Events, Fundraisers, etc.
On Friday 27/10 we had our first boerewors fundraiser for club members who will get selected to represent WP this season and it was a great success. We will be doing this type of fundraiser regularly so that we assist all our players that get selected to represent WP at NBC next year in KZN. Please come and support whenever we have fundraisers because, if we start early, it makes life easier financially later.
Thought for the Week
Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% HOW you react to it!! Too often we think that WE have problems in life when in fact we make it bigger than it really is. Look outside yourself and realise that very often your “problems” are really not as big as you make it out to be.