Rams rule open­ing round

Marlborough Express - - SPORT - PETER JONES

Saints Rams were the only side to score two wins dur­ing the first round of In­ter­city softball at Lans­downe Ball­park on Sat­ur­day.

Just four sides were in ac­tion, Rams and a Marl­bor­ough Un­der-19 com­bi­na­tion, plus Waimea Ea­gles and Stoke Ea­gles from Nel­son. Stoke man­aged a win and a loss, Un­der-19 picked up one win while Waimea lost both their en­coun­ters.

Rams wel­comed ace pitcher Kurt Schol­lum back to the mound for their first clash, against Waimea Ea­gles.

The big hurler mixed up his de­liv­er­ies, eas­ing into his sea­son, but was still too good for the Ea­gles’ bat­ters, who man­aged just three safe hits from his de­liv­er­ies. Ri­ley Power was on the mound for Waimea and also threw well, keep­ing Rams un­der con­trol through the early in­nings.

When the first run came it was in the top of the fourth, Schol­lum show­ing his bat­ting prow­ess with an in­side-the-park home run to put his side up 1-0.

With Rams field­ing well, led by in­fielder Drew Roberts, Ea­gles bat­tled to make progress while the home side were just be­gin­ning to find their range with the bat.

Roberts and Blake Wis­dom made base in the top of the sixth then Kyle Mar­fell stepped up with an in­field home run to push the score out to 4-0.

In the sev­enth, Wiremu Tuhi­mata and Josh Lude­mann got on base, be­fore a three-bag­ger from Wis­dom brought them home. Then Tyler Bird got bat on ball to drive Wis­dom home, com­plet­ing a 7-0 win with a strong all-round per­for­mance. Der­ryn French man­aged two hits from Schol­lum’s pitch­ing while Alas­tair Ching pro- It is: Pitch­ers - Kurt Schol­lum, Wil­liam Mac­don­ald. Catch­ers -

Josh Lude­mann, Chris­tian Mar­shall-Far­row. In­field­ers - Drew Roberts, Tyler Bird, Kyle Mar­fell (cap­tain), Braden Healy. Out­field­ers - Anaru An­der­son, Den­ham Wis­dom, Wiremu Tuhi­mata.

Util­i­ties - Blake Wis­dom, Ethan Jones. Train­ing Tues­day

Novem­ber 14, 6pm at the ball park. If un­able to attend call Steve 027 244 3493.

duced the other.

At the same time, on the num­ber one di­a­mond, Marl­bor­ough un­der-19 took on Stoke Ea­gles.

The home side had Wil­liam Mac­don­ald on the mound, while Stoke em­ployed Gareth Oliver.

Stoke scored first, Josh Kelly com­ing home on a wild pitch in the first, but the Un­der-19s lev­elled in the sec­ond, Horouta Wil­son slam­ming a three-bag­ger.

From then it was all Stoke, Macca Stringer, Josh Sto­bie scor­ing in the third and fifth re­spec­tively, be­fore a Caleb De­laney home run gave them a 4-1 ad­van­tage. Fur­ther runs to Oliver and Nigel Kelly in the sixth pushed them well ahead, although Anaru An­der­son’s run on the back of a Braden Healy hit re­duced the fi­nal mar­gin to 6-2.

The Un­der-19s turned in a bet­ter ef­fort in their sec­ond en­counter, beat­ing Waimea Ea­gles 6-5.

The scores were tied 3-3 af­ter the fifth in­ning, Todd Peat­tie hav­ing scored all three runs for the visi­tors. Runs to Te Ariki Peipi, Mac­don­ald and Wil­son pushed the home side ahead 6-3 and they ral­lied well to limit Waimea to just two runs in their fi­nal turn at bat, Nick Max and Power com­ing home on a two-base hit from Ching, who was left on base. Peipi, Healy, Mac­don­ald and Ethan Jones hit well for the Un­der19s.

Saints won their sec­ond game, against Stoke, 3-1. They started strongly. Tyler Bird reached base in the first in­ning, and was brought home by a Kyle Mar­fell dou­ble, then Schol­lum hit well to score Mar­fell. In the third they added their other run, Roberts mak­ing base on a hit and scam­per­ing home on an er­ror. Stoke scored a con­so­la­tion run in the sev­enth but Schol­lum ruled from the mound, notch­ing up 14 strike outs and con­ced­ing just two hits.

The sec­ond leg of In­ter­city play is sched­uled for Novem­ber 25.

RICKY WIL­SON/STUFF

Saints Rams batter Josh Lude­mann lines up a pitch.

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