In a tight contest that was decided by a throwing error, Warriors edged out Cougars 5-4 on Field of Dreams 2.
Huge efforts came from Dave Ardill on the mound throwing the complete game with 144 pitches (7 hits, 9 K’s) for the victors and Jake Forsythe with three hits including a double.
He was supported by singles from Chris Dyson, Dave Ardill, Vali Orcher, Brad Redshaw and Nathan Handsaker.
Kris Bird (5 inn, 7 hits, 8 Ks, 4 runs) and Brock Ridgewell (3.1 inn, 1 hit, 2 Ks, 1 run) toiled away on the mound for the Cougars and both had good outings.
Cougars will not be happy with the loss after going into the fourth innings with a 3-0 lead.
Warriors edged ahead in the fourth inning only for the Cougars to tie it up in the ninth.
Andy Bello came in off the bench for the men in blue and courtesy of an HPB and some uncharacteristic errors, he crossed the plate for a walk off win to the Warriors.
In the other game, Armidale Outlaws accounted for the Gunnedah Giants in a 14-1 scoreline that featured 17 hits for the Armidale team which saw the score blowout to an early 9-0 lead after the second.
Shaw, Alldis, Suzuki and Turner all had three-hit games, Jordan and Beat with two and Smith with a single.
The Giants didn’t help their own cause with pitchers Brodie Cleal and Grant Sipple committing eight errors for the day.
For the victors, Brad Smith threw an impressive 92-pitch outing over five innings, to show the depth of the pitching staff, along with first-time closer Masashi Suzuki who threw the final inning.
It was a sea of maroon as the Cavaliers took on the Cougars in B grade.
Outhit 10-8, the Cougars held a slim lead going into the third inning, but the Cavs piled in five runs in the third and fourth inning through Ben Ridgewell (2 hits) and Toby Bowen (2 hits) to put the contest out of reach of their clubmates.
Stevan Young (4 inn, 6 hits, 3 Ks, 3 runs) and Brian Hopton (2 inn, 2 hits, 5 Ks, 3 runs) came away with the bragging rights over a trio of Cougars throwers – Daniel Tadman, AJ Langenbaker and Toby Bowen – who couldn’t get the ball past the Cavs’ hitters on the day.
Outlaws defeated Gunnedah 11-6 in a B grade game that was dominated by the pitching of Jeremy Bird for a perfect first four innings (48 pitches including 7 K’s) before handing over to younger brother Keegan Bird.
Keegan struggled to find the strike zone, issuing seven walks and seeing the Giants plate all their runs in the final two innings.
The Outlaws’ hitters had done enough in the early innings, though, scoring two runs in each of the first three innings on the back of some strong hitting from Ryan Semple, Keegan Bird, Pat O’Connor and Shane Wolfenden (2 hits each) and singles to Jason ‘Solid’ Godwin, Jeremy Bird and Tamlyn Peterson.
Gunnedah had five singles for their day at the plate – Coen Clarke, Jody Revell, Josh Withers, Lochie Day and Ethan with a hit apiece.