A dramatic home-run by Seagulls infielder Jenny Douglas in the final play of the game gave the Southport Seagulls a narrow 30-29 upset victory over the Sefton Sharks.
With the Seagulls requiring four runs in the final innings, the top of Southport’s batting order did exactly that to record their first back-to-back wins of the season.
After receiving their first defeat of the season last week to the Crosby Vikings, the Sefton Sharks remained optimistic that they could recapture their early season momentum and remain league title contenders.
However, a combined nine runs from both sides in opening innings showed that the Seagulls intentions was to upset the apple cart and bring the Sharks back into the mix with the chasing pack.
Innings two, three and four saw nothing but runs galore. Two home-runs each by Seagulls infielders Lee Kendrick-Walker, Lubomir Durisin, as well as homers by catcher Mike Jackson and outfielder Tanya Basu saw the Seagulls move into a 20-18 lead with three innings remaining.
But with home-runs by Sharks players Katherine Longfield, Claire Riley, Graeme Nickson, Dave Martin Baez and captain Stephen Shearer, Sefton were still very much involved.
One run and a further seven in innings five and six saw the Sharks tie the game at 26-26, after the Seagulls replied with six of their own.
With both sides looking confident in winning this thrilling contest, the Sharks opened the seventh and final innings with three runs, leaving the Seagulls the target of four to win the game.
Base hits by Seagulls captain Andy Lott as well as Basu and Kendrick-Walker put infielder Jenny Douglas as the winning run. It ended with not only an unexpected home-run but the win.
That result now makes two heart-breaking defeats for the Sharks, and a possible missed opportunity of gaining some ground on the league leaders.
Elsewhere, a strong first three innings saw the St. Helens Sabres make it a memorable first win of the season after defeat the Formby Fins 23-14.
The Sabres went into this match without a win to their name, and their intention showed early on. A combined fifteen runs in the opening three innings including two home-runs by short-stop Jack Scholes propelled St. Helens into a 15-8 lead.
The Fins replied well in the fourth inning with a home-run of their by Andrew Gardner as well as three more runs. But sadly for them, that was a good as it got for the rest of the match, and the Sabres just kept on scoring.
Two more runs in the final innings made it a nine-run victory for the Sabres.
Next week the Seagulls will be looking for a third consecutive win. All they have to do is defeat league leaders, the Crosby Vikings, who return after having a rest week and are looking to extend their perfect start to the season. The other contest sees the Sharks take on the Fins in a match where both sides are aiming to swiftly get back to winning ways.
The Sefton Softball League is always happy to welcome new players. With the birth of a sixth team being the league’s next ambition, now is the time to be a part of this ever-growing league. Come down to our rookie sessions at PlayFootball on Drummond Road in Crosby on Monday evenings at 6pm to give it a go and then check out the matches from 7pm.
Also, don’t forget to check out the league website www.seftonsoftball.com, like the Facebook page by typing in Sefton Softball and follow them on Twitter @SeftonSoftball.