BBF A-League, Old Timers 28 Herts Eagles 17
Report by Michael Cresswell
After last week’s defeat by the Herts Raptors, the Eagles were determined to come back with a win and their opposition was the Old Timers who were also coming to Grovehill from a defeat.
The Old Timers record was misleading as they were currently 1-6 but with every game coming close and only losing by 5 to the Milton Keynes Coyotes the previous week the Eagles had to be at their best. The Eagles would also be missing their manager Duncan Hoyle so taking over today was Joseph Osbourne-Brade who would be making his managerial debut.
Starting on the mound for the Eagles would be Mike Cresswell who was making his first start as the starting pitcher while the experienced Tony Smyth would be taking the mound for the Old Timers.
The game started with a shaky few pitches from Mike Cresswell but found his groove after the first by striking out the side in the 2nd. On the batting side, the Eagles were getting on base with a lovely extra base hit from Serge Plata and other hits from Tom Kosak, Jamie Lang, Will Belbin and the ever reliable Adrian Smithers but unfortunately were stranding them on base. By the third inning however the runs were coming through for the Eagles and the game was a very close 7-5.
As the game progressed through the innings the Eagles were suffering still from leaving men on base however the Old Timers were slowly gaining runs making it 19-5 in the top of the 6th. But the bottom of the 6th showed the Eagles were not going to die out and with hits from nearly everyone including Duncan Hoyle (Who had arrived by the 6th) and a very strong hit to the fence from James Holt, the Eagles were generating runs and swinging the momentum into their favour, bringing it back to 19-10.
After pitching 6 innings, giving up 15 earned runs and striking out 8 batters, Mike Cresswell’s day was done on the mound and Jamie Lang came into relief for the Eagles and pitched a great first inning, only giving up one run and still keeping the momentum going for the Eagles. The 7th inning was almost a repeat of the previous, with more hits and another walk to the tally of Adam Landau-Smithers who came around to score, the game was 20-14 meaning this game would go on to at least another inning of enjoyment for both teams.
The 8th inning started with a strong amount of runs for the Old Timers with hits from Hector Correa-Amundarain, Billy Gibney and Richard Turpin helping them to score more runs to solidify their lead. The Eagles were determined to still score runs however with even more hits from Jamie Lang and Serge Plata who had great days at plate, but the game included something which has not happened to the Eagles this season. With Plata and Lang on base, Duncan Hoyle managed to hit an impressive inside the park home run to deep center field, making him currently the HR leader of the Eagles. However it was just not enough runs to keep the game going and the Eagles were beaten by the Old Timers with a score of 28-17.
The game was played with full enjoyment from both teams and though the Eagles may have left many on base, the error count was very low and everyone had a great day. Also a special thanks goes to Joseph Osbourne-Brade not only for managing in his debut but for also umpiring the entire game fairly and very well.