After the festivities of opening day were over and done with after last week we faced another new entrant into the WBL this season, the Senators from Woodville. Boasting a rich line up of previous WBL seasons players and national’s experienced players we knew they would be a formidable foe.
This game would test our depth and we were thankful it coincided with a bye for our Division 2 team as we got hit hard with the injury bug throughout the game and needed every one of the three ladies who started on the bench – all of whom hit the ground running helping ensure the Tigers got the choccies.
Before going into the specifics – congratulations to our four debutants who made their division 1 debuts for the season – Brianna Dillion, Alex Meldum, Em Parker and Erin Harris.
Flipping the game ball to Alice Prokopec for her first pitching start of the season we flew out of the gates with a strike out of the lead off hitter, and an unassisted ground out to first taking care of the first two hitters. Their three hole hitter showed some patience with the tight strike zone early, reaching on a walk before a single and another walk loaded the bases. Alice though composed herself to strike out the hitter with the bases loaded to have us ready to hit with the score still 0-0.
Jenna Handy then led off our innings showing not just the opposition pitcher that she was in charge of her at bat, but also showed the umpire a taste of her safety inspector voice ratting out one of our base coaches for not wearing a helmet causing a slight delay as poor Jackson had to coach with a double eared helmet for the rest of the game as I’d left the other skull cap in the sheds. After Jackson passed his pre shift safety briefing Jenna proceeded to work a 10 pitch walk, not letting the opposition starter settle into the game at all. McMahon then reached hit a grounder to second that wasn’t able to be handled and we had two runners on, none out for Prokopec. A quick four pitch walk loaded them up for Jenny Dunn who managed to score the runner from first on a misplayed grounder to second base. A fielders choice to short stop off the bat of Kenney, saw the first out recorded but the bases remained loaded. After a strike out threatened to end the inning with the good guys up only 1, debutant Dillon was hit by a pitch scoring a runner. With the bases still loaded Em Parker used her speed beating out a grounder to third and we had scored our third run of the game. Back to back HBPs saw us push across a five run mercy inning with one of these collecting Jojo Papadothomakos on the forearm – removing her from the game. Scans the next day didn’t give positive news and we are likely without our gun behind the plate for a few weeks at least.
Up 5-0 we gave the birthday girl the green light to assume the honours behind the plate and Alice went back to work against the senators, Erin Harris coming in to play first base. The new battery took a moment to settle in and the first three hitters reached before the line up turned over and their lead off hit into a fielders choice to shortstop. The senators loaded the bases again before Alice struck out one with the bases loaded before a tough pop fly between short and third resulted in a 5-6-4 fielders choice out. Good guys up 5-1.
Getting into their bullpen early they led off their second defensive inning with a fresh pitcher and things looked good for the bays when we loaded the bases with none out but credit to the Woodville pitcher who managed to get out of the inning without us scoring with a strike out, pop fly and a fielders choice ground out to third.
That was all she wrote for Prokopec’s debut on the mound – a tidy 2 inning start giving up just the one run while striking out 3. Handing the ball over to Bianca Smith, B showed her composure quickly retiring the side with no runs scoring and getting us back into the dugout to hit again. Alex Meldrum replaced Dillion at this point and we managed to push two runs across with a lead off walk, stolen base, some situational hitting moving runners over before two singles resulted in runs. Parker tweaked a muscle leaving the game and in came Aldwin emptying the bench.
Smith snuffed out Woodville’s final stand with only 2 runs coming across in the fourth inning. With light fading that was all for this game and we came away with a strong 7-3 win on the back of some fantastic defense.
Next up is Gawler (both Division 1 & 2) this Friday at the GBC. See you all there – 6.15 start.