Red Sox Red completed a fairytale finish to the Wagga Baseball season with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Wagga Giants at Jubilee Park on Sunday.
The Wagga Baseball grand final certainly lived up to expectations with both teams giving everything in a hard-fought game.
Red Sox came away with a 3-2 win to life the trophy after a game that showcased the talent Wagga Baseball has to offer.
The scoring got underway in the first innings with Red Sox capitalising on two Giants errors to score the game’s first run.
Steve Leadbeatter scored after striking out but making it to first base when the pitch got past the catcher, eventually scoring on the second error of the innings.
The Giants also scored one of their own in their half of the first innings with Ben Adam reaching base via a walk, then advancing on a double by Chris Driscoll and scoring off Reid Kemna’s sacrifice fly.
Both teams then traded clean innings until the top of the fourth where Red Sox scored two runs. Leadbeatter again reached base on a Giants error before being driven in by a mammoth Ricky Humphries home run that cleared the home run line by a large margin on a hit into the wind.
This play proved pivotal as the Giants could only manage one more run, scored by James Scott after drawing a walk in the bottom of the fifth innings and then stealing bases to score on a wild pitch.
The pitching in this game was as good as you will see with Kemna striking out 14 barrers against zero walks in six innings for the Giants. His only blemish was the home run by Humphries for one earned run.
James Hutchinson also pitched the full game for Red Sox, striking out nine batters and only walking two over his six innings of work, with two earned runs.
The Giants only managed three hits all up, the previously mentioned double by Driscoll and singles by James Scott and Albert Richardson.
Red Sox also struggled with the bat with Humphries collecting two hits, the home run and a single, and their only other hit was a single provided by Hutchinson.
The victory completed a fairytale finish for Red Sox Red after a horrid start to the season where they did not look like winning a game until the halfway point.
They put it all together with some mid-season recruits and showed plenty of grit to take a fourth-placed finish at the end of the regular season and turned it into a premiership.
Credit must go to their coach, Adam Hoogers, and the whole club for a strong finish to the season.
Wagga Baseball will now move forward to their next representative endeavour in August, when they travel to Blacktown to participate in the NSW Country Baseball Championships.
Wagga Baseball president Albert Richardson is confident of a strong showing.
“The team we are sending is quite strong so we hope to put in a good showing against some of the best talent NSW has to offer,” Richardson said.