Strong finish


GAWLER Rangers finished the baseball minor rounds on a high, with the division three and four teams collecting wins against Northern Districts, and finals-bound junior teams also successful.

An eight-run first inning set up the Rangers’ division three victory, helped by five walks and three hit by pitches, and Kris Nankivell’s two-run hit.

After North scored a run in the bottom of the first, Gawler responded with another four runs in the second frame – Zac Allen’s two-run single was the highlight.

Allen’s RBI double in the fourth and Josh Mayfield’s run-scoring hit in the fifth helped the Rangers finish 15-2 victors.

While it was an overall good game by everyone, pitcher Jake Rodda excelled, throwing five innings for three hits and seven K2s.

Meanwhile, in a tight game, the Rangers came from behind and then held on to beat Northern Districts 6-5 in division four.

Josh Mayfield had thrown six innings for four hits and three runs for five K2s, while Gawler scored three runs at the top of the sixth for the game to be tied 3-3.

Steve Vanpoorten’s run-scoring double put the Rangers ahead in the top of the seventh, while Jacob Greening hit a two-run single for a 6-3 lead.

But, in the bottom of the seventh, North mounted a comeback of its own, loading the bases with one out and one run in, when Vanpoorten came on to relieve and get the final two outs needed, for just one run, to save the match.

Finally, division seven lost 13-18 to Southern Districts after fighting the game out to the end.

Gawler scored seven final inning runs, with Noah Okeil’s three-run triple the highlight.

Gawler will have two teams in the finals – under 15s and under 13s – with both sides finishing the minor round with a win.

The under 15s beat Kensington 11-9 after scoring five first inning runs, with Okeil belting a long two-run home run.

Meanwhile, the under 13s beat Glenelg 17-8.

Caleb Burrows led with three singles and Boyd Worden pitched three innings of no-hit ball for seven K2s.