The Badgers’ 13-4 victory in the first match of their BBF AAA double header against Essex Redbacks on Sunday has kept their playoff hopes alive. The Bristol team leapt out to an early 7-0 lead with shortstop Mattia Papini leading the way with two hits, three runs and two runs driven in.
The Badgers showed great discipline at the plate, benefitting from 10 walks as the Redbacks pitching failed to hit the strike zone. With Rhodri Theaker pitching a complete game and striking out three Redbacks, the Badgers were able to control the game throughout the middle innings before scoring six runs in the sixth and seventh to secure the win.
The second game was the mirror image of the first as the Redbacks scored early to win the game 11-3. The Badgers also committed five errors in the field which put added pressure on their pitchers. First baseman Carlson Charles led the Badgers offense with a home run while Anthony Desgardin hit a double but in the end the Redbacks pitching was too strong.
“The win was crucial and kept our season alive,” said Badgers player/manager Rhodri Theaker. “I want to thank Alex Lane-Kieltyka and Ed Smith from the Brunels who made their debuts for us and made some impressive defensive plays which resulted in important outs.”
The Bats travelled to Bracknell for their BBF AA clash but came away with 12-2 and 4-2 defeats, with fielding errors compounding the heavy loss in the first game. Sean Wilkins pitched well in the first game, but the errors in the field meant the Bats were always playing catch-up, despite doubles from Wilkins and Tim Singiser.
The second game was closer with Ty Porter good on the mound and better fielding. Chris D’Angelo drove in the two Bats runs but it was not enough for the Bristol side. Despite the weekend’s results, the Bats remain just 2.5 games out from a place in the playoffs.
“It was very disappointing to lose the first game because of the errors, something that has plagued us all season but we are still in with a chance of a playoff spot if everything goes our way,” said Alex Brown, the Bats player/manager.
The Buccaneers were away to Bournemouth Bears A on Sunday and despite two defeats still have an outside chance of making the BBF/SWWBL Wessex Division playoffs. The Bears were up 6-1 at the top of the third inning before the Buccaneers pulled back to within a single run. Simon Schwarz, Paul Blackburn, Wai Fu Lam and Tim Clough all had multi-hit games but the Bears offense took control at the bottom of the third inning to grab a lead they never surrendered, eventually running out 13-8 winners.
The Bears dominated the second game to win 17-9 after surging to a 12-3 lead by the end of the third inning. Outfielder Jamie Hartley was outstanding in the field pulling off two superb catches but the Buccaneers offense could only manage two hits against some strong pitching.
“Although we were missing a couple of our strongest players, we fought hard but in the end had to give second best to the Bears,” said Phil Midgley who was managing the Bristol team. “We still have hope of that playoff spot but it will be an extremely tough task to make it.”
The Brunels return to action with a home fixture against the Bournemouth Bears at Somerdale Pavilion, while the Badgers make the trip to Richmond to take on the Knights.
The Bats will also be at home on Sunday as they welcome the Richmond Dragons for a crucial AA match up.
On Saturday the Bristol Bobcats travel to London for the next round of the BBF Women’s Baseball League where they will take on Belles Baseball and London Mayhem.