Formerly delivered by Victorian Provincial Baseball League before unification under the Baseball Victoria banner in 2009, the time-honoured Senior Winter Championship – with a history dating back eighty years - will be held at Geelong Baseball Centre over the Queen’s Birthday Weekend.
The first of five Winter Championships to be organised by Baseball Victoria over coming months, the senior tournament has attracted nine teams across two groups. Second in Division One for 2016, Geelong - under incoming Coach Aaron Green - will be aiming to go one better.
Kingsley Collins (12 June 2017)
Geelong Baseball Association is the Senior Winter Championship winner after its 4-2 result over Mount Gambier at Geelong Baseball Centre this afternoon.
Notwithstanding a couple of brief rain delays, the Division One final was a game for the ages, with pitchers on both sides dominating a contest that went three pressure-packed extra innings. Superb for Geelong, Rudy Jaramillo backed up from three innings in the morning with a complete-game, six hit outing in the final - including a dozen strikouts.
Looking good after edging ahead in the top of the last, Mount Gambier conceded the tying run on a muffed flyball and an infield play before Bellarine Manager Cameron Brown delivered the decisive blow - with two out - with a two-run, walk-off shot deep over the leftfield wall. One of several offensive livewires for the GBA over the arduous three days, Brown received terrific support from Justin Charles (three hits and an RBI), Chris Durston (two and one), Liam Spence and James Renouf (both with two knocks).
Geelong had earlier qualified for the Division One final with a thumping 9-2 win over Dandenong on Monday morning, while Mount Gambier stunned the undefeated Ringwood with another strong performance.
Winning six of its seven games played – and dropping its preliminary game against Dandenong by a solitary run - Geelong enjoyed an outstanding series, with its experienced and its younger players all stepping a level when it mattered most.
Just a fantastic effort as well by Mount Gambier, which has never won a Division One title and that last won Division Two back in 1980 before a lengthy absence from the Senior Championship.
While there were a number of lopsided results created by a drastically revamped draw occasioned by team withdrawal, it was another outstanding weekend of competition demonstrating that winter baseball is still well and truly alive – despite the apparent indifference to both the series and Carnival history shown by the state governing body.
Congratulations to the Geelong squad and to North East - the Division Two winner. Well done to all participating associations, players, managers, umpires, ground staff and supporters. Thank you sincerely to the army of volunteers – particularly from the Saints and Guild clubs - who helped deliver another terrific event.
Scroll down for images from the Division One final supplied by Gary Simper.
|MT GAMBIER||2 0 0 0 4 1 (7) 2 errors|
|GEELONG||2 0 2 0 0 1 (5) 2 errors|
|GBA Hits:||J.Charles 3, L.Spence 2, C.Durston 2, J.Renouf 2, C.Brown (home run), L.Weldon|
|GBA RBIs:||C.Brown 2, J.Charles, C.Durston|
|GBA Pitching:||R.Jaramillo 9 inn, 6 H, 12 Ks, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER|
GEELONG EARNS FINAL FOUR BERTH
Kingsley Collins (11 June 2017)
With two hard-fought wins over Sunraysia today, Geelong Baseball Association has qualified for a Division One semi-final clash with Dandenong on Monday morning, while an undefeated Ringwood will meet Mount Gambier, which put reigning champion City out of contention.
The winners of those games will progress to the Division One final, starting at the stadium at 1.30 PM.
A tough opponent on its return to competition this year, Sunraysia held a lead in both contests before the GBA produced timely offence - coincidentally in the fifth inning of each game - to edge away and register vital wins. Among highlights of the day were a stellar outing by Josh Crotty in the afternoon game and the offensive output of Lewis Weldon and Cameron Brown - who continue to show the way for a lineup that hits one through nine.
Needing to win six of its seven games to land the title, Geelong appears to have been placed at something of a disadvantage against opponents who will have played less games. However, with its pitching staff managed carefully by Manager Aaron Green, and with its offence in ominous form, the local squad is well-placed for a serious tilt at the championship.
Still fancied by many, Ringwood will be tested by Mount Gambier – which has performed admirably – while Dandenong can never be underestimated as a prolific championship winner over the past decade.
North-East, Bendigo and Latrobe Valley will compete for the Division Two title, with the final scheduled for Pioneer Park (Diamond Four), also starting at 1.30 PM.
With pleasant weather expected, it should be a riveting final day of competition.
Scroll down for details from Geelong Baseball Association Day Two games.
|GEELONG||2 0 0 0 4 1 (7) 2 errors|
|SUNRAYSIA||2 0 2 0 0 1 (5) 2 errors|
|GBA Hits:||C.Brown 2, J.Charles 2, Jarryd Wood 2, L.Spence, L.Weldon, J.Renouf, K.Spence|
|GBA RBIs:||L.Weldon, M.Sage, J.Renouf, Jarryd Wood, C.Durston, J.Charles|
|GBA Pitching:||J.Lee 5 inn, 6 H, 4 Ks, 4 BB, 0 HPB, 4 ER|
|James Wood 1 inn, 1 H, 1 K, 1 BB, 1 HPB, 1 ER|
|GEELONG||1 0 0 0 3 0 2 (6) 1 error|
|SUNRAYSIA||0 0 1 2 0 0 0 (3) 2 errors|
|GBA Hits:||L.Weldon 3, C.Brown 2, C.Durston 2, L.Spence, J.Renouf|
|GBA RBIs:||L.Weldon 3, C.Brown 3|
|GBA Pitching:||J.Crotty 5.2 inn, 5 H, 3 Ks, 3 BB, 0 HPB, 3 ER|
|S.Thompson 0.1 inn, 0 H, 0 K, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER|
METRO TEAMS MAKE THE EARLY RUNNING
Kingsley Collins (10 June 2017)
With Day One done and dusted in the Senior Winter Championship that commenced at Geelong Baseball Centre today, the metropolitan teams have already flexed some collective muscle and are looking good to qualify for Division One play.
With big wins over Mount Gambier (0-2) and North Eastern (0-2), City (2-0) is on target to defend its title from last year, although Dandenong (2-0) showed plenty in dispensing with Latrobe Valley (0-3) and squeezing past Geelong (2-1) to remain undefeated along with Ringwood (2-0) – the tournament favourite going in.
A free-scoring Sunraysia (2-0) has already made a stunning return to the Championship and will surely take it right up to the metropolitan squads over the next two days – including Sunday matchups against Dandenong and Geelong.
Of the other regional teams, Mount Gambier pushed Ringwood in their clash, while North East hit well against both City and Ringwood – guaranteeing a serious contest between those two on Sunday.
Facing a first day triple-header, Geelong packed too many guns for Bendigo (0-2) in Game One before rebounding from the Game Two setback against Dandenong with a thumping result over Latrobe Valley. With two wins appearing to be enough to qualify for a Division One berth, it will be fascinating to see how the GBA and Sunraysia approach their Sunday game, as strategy is bound to come into play for a number of teams.
Senior Winter Championship action will resume on Sunday, starting at 9.00 AM.
Scroll down for details on Geelong Baseball Association Day One games.
|BENDIGO||0 1 0 0 0 0 0 (1) 0 errors|
|GEELONG||2 3 0 6 0 0 x (11) 0 errors|
|GBA Hits:||C.Brown 3, L.Weldon 2, M.Sage 2, J.Renouf, Jarryd Wood, L.Harty, K.Spence, K.Greenhalgh|
|GBA RBIs:||L.Weldon 2, Jarryd Wood 2, L.Harty, C.Brown, J.Renouf, M.Sage|
|GBA Pitching:||E.Rickard 3 inn, 3 H, 2 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER|
|S.Thompson 3 inn, 2 H, 5 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER|
|GEELONG||1 0 0 0 0 4 (5) 1 error|
|DANDENONG||1 0 0 0 3 2 (6) 0 errors|
|GBA Hits:||J.Renouf 2, C.Brown, L.Weldon, J.Charles, K.Spence, K.Greenhalgh, C.Durston|
|GBA RBIs:||M.Sage 3, L.Weldon, C.Durston|
|GBA Pitching:||James Wood 3 inn, 3 H, 2 Ks, 1 BB, 0 HPB, 1 ER|
|J.Crotty 2 inn, 2 H, 0 K, 4 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER|
|L.Harty 0.0 inn, 0 H, 0 K, 0 BB, 1 HPB, 0 ER|
|Jarryd Wood 0.2 inn, 1 H, 1 K, 2 BB, 0 HPB, 2 ER|
|GEELONG||3 10 6 0 1 (20) 0 errors|
|LATROBE||0 0 0 0 0 (0) 3 errors|
|GBA Hits:||Jarryd Wood 3, K.Spence 3, James Wood 2, E.Rickard 2, K.Greenhalgh 2, C.Brown, S.Thompson|
|GBA RBIs:||K.Spence 5, C.Brown 3, K.Greenhalgh 3, Jarryd Wood 3, James Wood 2, E.Rickard, J.Crotty, J.Renouf, S.Thompson|
|GBA Pitching:||D.Davenport 5 inn, 4 H, 3 Ks, 0 BB, 0 HPB, 0 ER|
|DIVISION TWO FINAL|
|DIVISION ONE FINAL|
|MT GAMBIER||14||NORTH EAST||3|
|Second Group B||versus||Third Group B|
|Fourth Group B||versus||Fourth Group A|
|Second Group A||versus||Third Group A|