Mariners cruise to playoffs with another win

THE Shoalhaven Mariners started off the second half of the Illawarra Junior Baseball League under 12s season with a tight 9-7 victory over the Berkeley Eagles at Fred Finch Park, Berkeley, on Sunday, February 2.

The win has consolidated their third place on the ladder.

Jayden Brain opened the pitching and threw a fantastic first innings, striking out three out of four batters 0-0 in the middle of the first. 

After being walked second batter in, Stephen Pearson scored his team’s first run, brought home by a base hit from Robert Coleman. 

Andrew Pearson was walked, then Jayden took a hit to the leg and was walked. Josh Scott-Brannigan took to the plate. 

He hit a fantastic double to centre field, bringing home three runners. 

At the end of the first inning the Mariners were up 4-0. 

Even though Berkeley brought home their first run in the top of the second innings, Jayden again struck out three out of four batters. 

Middle of the second, 4-1 to Mariners. 

The Mariners’ fifth run was scored after Stephen, who bravely took a ball to the foot advancing him to first base and was brought home by a Lucas Scott-Brannigan double. 

The score at the end of the second innings was 5-1. 

Regular catcher Ethan Harpur and then relief pitcher Josh Scott-Brannigan took the pitching mound in the top of the third. 

At the same time the Eagles rallied, and after some fielding errors the Eagles brought home five runs. 

In the middle of the third the score was 5-6. 

The Mariner’s bats also rallied in the bottom of the third innings. 

Runs were scored by Jayden, Josh, Ethan and Robert, with the score at the bottom of third 9-6.

Closer Robert Coleman took to the mound at the top of the fourth innings. 

The first batter for the Eagles made a base hit, advancing to third on stolen bases. 

In his efforts to steal home, a brilliant play at the plate by Robert and catcher Lucas tagged the runner out at home. 

Ethan took a great catch at first base for the second out, and with a final strike out by Robert, the Mariners were home 9-7. 

It was a great comeback won by a side depleted by representative duties.

The team’s pocket rocket Ethan Scott-Brannigan was away on Illawarra under 10 representative duties. 

The under 12s team would like to say a big thank you to their departing coach, Scott Deakes who has been posted way out west for the school year. 

His hopefully temporary departure is a big blow to the team, but the players intend to continue to do the Shoalhaven and coach Deakes proud for the remainder of the season. 

The team also encourages any of the Shoalhaven Friday night Zooka players to come and join them on a Sunday morning as they sail towards the playoffs.

See coach Chris or manager Lisa on a Friday night for more information.

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