With only a handful of games to go, the final four of the Men’s National Championship has begun to take shape with ACT, NSW, Victoria and WA locking up finals positions
Victoria tallied up another win in their first game against Queensland in what was a back and forth affair.
Queensland looked in control after pulling ahead by five runs following the 3rd inning, Victoria only putting up one run in the first three stanzas to the Maroon’s six.
After clawing two runs back in the bottom of the 4th to reduce the gap to three runs, the Victorian batters came to the fore in the 6th inning.
Glen Rigg belted a homerun sending Sam Kassianou around for his second run of the day, George Psimaris benefited off a Ryan Sinclair double who, in turn, was sent home by a Ryan Shannahan double.
Lewis Weldon iced the inning with a homerun to centre-right field with both Shannahan and Ricky Wheeler on base meaning Queensland leaked seven runs in the 6th.
The Maroon’s couldn’t make up the four run gap in the 7th inning and Victoria went on to win 10-6.
Western Australia was next to fall just short of defeating Victoria in game two of the day.
After letting Victoria get to a four run lead after the 1st inning, WA pulled them back to a two ahead in the 3rd and captured a two run lead themselves following the top of the 6th.
Sean Duxbury, Jack Burt, Louis Scaramella, Scott Patterson, Dion Harrison and a Brendon O’Byrne homerun added up to six run innings in what looked to be a momentum shift in the game.
Sinclair and Kassianou crossed home plate in the bottom of the 6th setting up a thrilling 7th with scores tied 8-6.
Jack Burt hit a double for WA off the first pitch of the 7th inning but was left stranded after three quick outs enforced by Victoria.
Psimaris scored first for the Vics and Kassianou stepped up to the plate with Sinclair on third and Todd Kriehn on second, he hit a clutch double sending the runners on base home and giving Victoria a close win 9-8.
South Australia won’t go home empty handed after winning their first game of the week over Queensland 10-4.
Two homers from Jarryd Farrell and one from Bryce Heal provided the highlights as the SA boys wrapped up the game following the top of the 7th.
However the celebrations were short lived when SA met the efficient 89’ers who once again rolled through comfortably for an 8-0 win in just five innings.
Two runs in the 2nd inning and six in the 3rd was all that was needed from the hometown team to win.
Across on the other diamond, NSW pulled away late in the game to put a win on the board against Western Australia, six runs in the 6th innings meant there was no need for a 7th.
The final game of the night NSW v ACT was suspended due to lightning in the area, to be completed following the final fixture games on Friday.