Shoalhaven Mariners rep baseball side miss out at country championships

Rep side: Jayden Brain,  AJ Provest, Courtney Dom, Murray Lugg, Lee Lawson, Cameron McNicol, Gabe Tate, Brenton McMahon, Kai Meuronen, Stuart Raymond, Jack Middleton, Jayston Spindler, Ben Elliott.

Rep side: Jayden Brain, AJ Provest, Courtney Dom, Murray Lugg, Lee Lawson, Cameron McNicol, Gabe Tate, Brenton McMahon, Kai Meuronen, Stuart Raymond, Jack Middleton, Jayston Spindler, Ben Elliott.

The Shoalhaven Mariners senior representative team travelled to Blacktown International Sportspark on May 6-7 to play in the NSW country baseball championships. The Mariners were asked to play 3 games on Saturday the 1st of which was against Coffs Harbour at 8.30am on the main diamond. With big expectations and a strong lineup the Mariners went into this game quietly confident, but with only 3 safe hits for the game Coffs Harbour ran out winners 4-1

Game 2 was played against the Central Coast at 2pm, again on the main diamond. This was a thrilling duel where the Mariners took the early ascendancy and never looked back. The Mariners bats came alive  with hits from Murray Lugg (2) Jayston Spindler (2), Gabe Tate (2) and Jack Middleton. Starting pitcher Andrew Provest  and closing pitcher Ben Elliott also had strong games. They threw everything at the Coasties hitters and stopped a late charge, the Mariners winning the game 6-5.

Game 3 was a night game played under lights on diamond 2 against Newcastle. After a slow start for the Mariners they were never in the game against their highly rated opponents, going down 4-10. Hits went to Jack Middleton (2), Ben Elliott (2), Courtney Dom, Jayden Brain 2B and Cameron McNicol.

The Mariners returned on Sunday morning to face off against arch rivals Illawarra in a game that would determine who progressed to the gold medal game later that day. Mariners hitter Lee Lawson started the game off with a bang sending a ball deep to left field and securing a lead off Triple however the succeeding hitters were unable to convert with the Mariners ended the 1st inning scoreless.

Lee would go on to hit another triple and a double in the best hitting performance from a single player in a game. Pitcher Andrew Provest threw well for the Mariners but sustained opposition hits late in the game combined with costly errors meant the Mariners were unable to capitalise on a golden opportunity. In a cruel twist of events, in another game Coffs Harbour beat Newcastle, placing the Mariners 5th and out of any possible play-off contention.

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