Daily Wrap, Day 4 – January 5, Blacktown

Daily Wrap, Day 4 – January 5, Blacktown

Open Women – Day 4

Day 4 brought some unexpected weather and a delay to the days play down at Blacktown on Thursday afternoon. The Tournament Management Committee had their work cut out for them as they tried to squeeze as many games as they could into the day once the rain had subsided. At the conclusion of the days last games (edging past midnight) the battle for third and fourth is still an open race.

The WA Flames take a one game lead on the teams fighting for a finals berth as they enter Day 5 after a nail-biting win over the ACT Diamonds. With final ladder positions determined by the runs against rule, this win could prove pivotal to the flames hopes of getting hold of the Shield.

Vic Titans made sure they kept in touch, also beating the Diamonds with a much needed win in Game 20 (3-0). Qld and NSW kept up their good form both adding a further two wins to their tally, leaving the Heat still undefeated after 8 games.

Excitement will be rife at Blacktown today as teams sitting third through sixth will play off in what seemingly becomes a series of mini finals throughout the day.

Standout Individual Performances

In a game where the SA Starz did all they could to push ladder leaders Qld Heat to their first loss for the tournament there was simply no answer to Qld pitching ace Justine Smethurst, pitching a no-hitter including 8 SO’s. Heat won the game with a single run in the bottom of the fifth.

NSW’s Sam Poole might be asking for more of these late night games as she collected 3 hits and 5 RBI’s from her 6 AB’s across her two games against SA and Vic. The highlight came early in the top of the first against the Starz as she got a hold of a Morgan Melloh (USA) pitch sending it over centre left field for a 3-run homer.

Results

Game 19 ACT Diamonds 1 dftd by WA Flames 2
Game 20 Vic Titans 3 dftd ACT Diamonds 0
Game 21 Qld Heat 1 dftd SA Starz 0
Game 22 Vic Titans 0 dftd by NSW Firestars 5
Game 23 Qld Heat 4 dftd WA Flames 1
Game 24 SA Starz 0 dftd by NSW FIrestars 9

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Under 17 Girls – Day 3

The junior contingent felt the brunt of the impact as changes were made to the draw in light of the poor weather. Three of the day’s six scheduled games were postponed until Saturday morning at 10:00am as ground crews worked on getting the diamonds back to a playable level.

Of the games that were played out, NSW continued their dominance of the competition knocking over their closest competitor so far SA in a 10-3 victory. SA put a scare into the host state as they posted 3 runs in the bottom of the first to lead early – only to watch NSW net 3 back in the second and close the game out with 6 runs in the fifth.

Victoria picked up their 4th win for the tournament in a high scoring game against WA (11-6) to give themselves a shot at a top 2 finish. ACT the other winner (7-6 over Qld) to put space between them and the winless WA.

Standout Individual Performances

The ACT girls showed some grit with solid team batting after dropping 6 early runs to Qld in Game 19. After a few Qld fielding errors ACT’s Breanna Payten (2 hits, 2 RBI’s, 4 AB’s) consolidated in the fourth inning with a single to centre bringing Lahynee Kearnes home. Payten then grounded one out in the top of the fifth to net another RBI and get her team the lead.

The Vic’s showed similar prowess with the bat as they took the diamond at 9:30pm for their game against WA. None were more impressive than Marlie Hurinui (Vic) who stepped up to the box three times for 3 hits and 2 RBI’s. Vic’s took out the game 11-6.

Results

Game 19 Qld 6 dftd by ACT 7
Game 20 ACT v WA DNP (Resume Jan 7 @ 10am)
Game 21 SA 3 dftd by NSW 10
Game 22 SA v Qld DNP (Resume Jan 7 @ 10am)
Game 23 Vic 11 dftd WA 6
Game 24 Vic v NSW DNP (Resume Jan 7 @ 10am)

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CATCH THE FINAL OF THE GILLEY’S SHIELD LIVE ON SUNDAY 8 JANUARY

COVERAGE FROM 5:40PM