18’s Claim the win in a see-saw battle. 6-9

Hitting through the order sees VOB U18 accumulate runs steadily (W 4 – L 0)

After a two week break, with a potentially strong Van der Stel U18 forfeiting, and the SA v France Senior Series bye, VOB U18 faced the pitching depth and top order hitting strength of unbeaten Crusaders U18 this Saturday past. Many of the athletes on both teams have trained and played together on regional teams, and during the P2P series, and know each other’s game well.

Again Luke Budler started well with a strikeout, then walked the next batter. A stolen base, a K and another walk seemed to pose no particular threat, but an infield error on a straightforward ground ball saw Crusaders capitalise and score a run. A third K, after third walk, saw the now bases loaded threat put to bed. Two walks and a Hit By Pitch laid the table for cleanup hitter Jordyn Riffel. The first run came as leadoff Luke November scored on a passed ball, and then Jordyn’s sac fly duly brought in Budler for the second run to give VOB U18 the lead. Seth Beukes followed with a right hand side of the infield ground ball rbi scoring Keegan Hickley. 0 – 3.

“Bud” was quickly through the bottom of the Crusaders order with two K’s. But the strong Crusader’s top order would not go quietly, and two hits, some sloppy fielding and a couple of walks, saw four runs scored in an innings the VOB U18’s would rather forget. The rust of two weeks off, and multisport athletes being available for their first game was showing. Quick to put it behind them, the team bounced back. Alex Japhta won a the battle of a long at bat, doubling to centre and scoring Shakeel Jattiem who had walked. That forced a pitching change. Matthew Blows responded immediately with an rbi single to score Alex. The game was tied at 5 – 5.

A well taken pop fly by Alex Japhta at catcher saw Budler set up to close out the bottom order again. 2 K’s later – job done. VOB U18’s showed good focus as Jordyn did his job as innings lead off and got on with a walk and stole second. Seth advanced him with a hit, and Josh Adonis’ sac fly scored him. Tight fielding and overambitious coaching saw a potential run wasted with an out at third, but the pressure was beginning to tell as Shakeel walked again and worked his way to home on three passed balls. 5 – 7.

Lefty Kian Afrika then replaced Budler on the hill, and worked his way efficiently through the Crusader’s dangerous top order, despite an infield error on a softly hit blooper. 2 runs ahead, VOB U18 then consolidated their lead as Blows got his second hit and advanced on passed balls, and Luke walked. Budler then doubled to score both. 5 – 9.

Kian got ahead with a K in what was likely to be the final frame with time running down. Two walks followed with as he then worked too fine. A double steal saw the ball thrown through third base, with the run scoring. The recovery saw the second runner thrown out at 3rd. Kian then finished the game with a full count pickoff, resulting in a textbook run down. 6 – 9 win.

Coach’s comment – Again we hit the ball hard and saw results.

Batting: Matthew Blows – 2 -2, 2 rbi’s; Luke Budler 1 – 1, 2 rbi’s, 1 bb, 1 HPB; Alex Japhta 1 – 2 (double); Seth Beukes 1 – 3, 1 rbi; Josh Adonis 0 – 1, Sac Fly, 1 rbi; Jordyn Riffel 0 – 2, Sac Fly, 1 rbi

Pitching: Luke Budler (W) 3 innings, 6 K, 2 hits, 6 bb, 5 runs, 2 earned; Kian Afrika (S) 2 innings, 0 hits, 3 bb, 1 runs, 0 earned.

No Comments 2018 11 17From the DugoutU18

12’s fight to the end. 11-10

VOB 11 – Crusaders 10

Well done to the “kids” once again for coming from nowhere to secure the win. The thing that always amazes me is the drive and determination they have. We did not start off as we have been the previous weeks and after the 2nd inning we were down 7 – 2.

After the 3rd inning we were back at 7all. Awesome inning by the top of the line up. They got to see the pitcher for the second time and we got crucial at bat’s from the top 6 hitters (Dale, storm, dante, jaedon, nur, Caleb) to get in base for the bottom of the order hitters (Fayaad and Tristan). Some of the highlights in order of it happening. Jaedon’s sliding play behind second base with 2 down and bases loaded In the 4th inning with us behind by 2, he back hands it and hustles to the base to get the third out of the inning.

Dante hitting a bases loaded double to take the lead in the bottom of the 4th inning. And it was a ground rule double to right center. Then Storm coming in closing the game with 3 strike outs to secure the win. Well done boys and girls for the great fighting spirit and great comeback.

Good luck to all our kids for exams that start this week. Give it your all, as always.

No Comments 2018 11 17From the DugoutUnder 12

Macaws majors nightmare double header weekend.

The first double header weekend of the season and what a time for the young Macaws to play their worst baseball this season. On Saturday it was home in a very tough wind against Grassy park Crusaders. This game will surely rank as the worst display of our young season, but luckily the boys pulled a rabbit out of the hat to score 5 runs in their last batting turn to level the game at 16-16 before bad light suspended the game.

Jesse Johnson got his second start and was not his fluent self, but he was hurt badly by his defense. Jesse pitched three complete innings and faced one batter in the 4th striking out 3 while also hitting 3 batters, before he was replaced. By that stage he had conceded 10 runs of which only 3 were earned runs. The defense made well over the recorded 7 errors with drop catches being the order of the day. Derick Bayliss relieved Jesse and, although he held crusaders to scoring only 3 more runs in 4 innings, he too was sabotaged by more errors. Michael Scritten took over from Derick and also conceded 3 runs and made one error himself.

With all these errors it would be tough trying to find positives, but scoring 16 runs ourselves must be a good thing. Jared Haynes (2-5, 2K’s, RBi), Luke November (3-6, SF, HBP), Damian Perkins (1-1, RBi), Lance Gordon (2-6, BB, SB, K, RBi) Marvin Mahoney (2-5, 2B, 2 RBi) and Jesse Johnson (1-2, 3 BB’s) RBi) contributed to the offensive side.

The most exciting part of this game happened in the Macaws last batting turn. Down 16-11 with one out in the 9th inning and the game all but over, this young team decided it was time to wake up and make a run at Crusaders. 2 hits followed by a HBP, pinch running and pinch hitting changes being made and all of a sudden we were in the game. A hit up the middle by lance Gordon scored the tying runs in the fast fading light. Then, with Lance on first and two down, an over eager attempt to get into scoring position ended the inning at 16-16. It was evident we would not be able to start a new inning so the game was suspended and will be completed in a week’s time due to the double header weekend.

Lots of lessons for these young players, but that’s what young teams do.

No Comments 2018 11 17From the DugoutMajor League