Nick Shailes in action for Redbirds.
Nick Shailes in action for Redbirds. Geoffrey Hallmann

Workers squeeze home 9-8

WORKERS managed a minor miracle against Marist Brothers on Saturday, scoring four runs in the bottom of the ninth innings to squeeze home 9-8 in Rex Airlines FNC Major League baseball at Albert Park in Lismore.

Brothers pitcher Pat Doyle continued to deliver the goods as a lead-off hitter, scoring in the top of the first after securing second base on a double to left field then coming home on consecutive wild pitches from Workers starter Bryce Martin.

Doyle’s pitching also proved a handful for the tri-colours.

The young right-hander cut a swathe through the Workers line-up for the first four innings while his teammates set about accumulating a 6-0 lead going into the fifth.

Workers did themselves no favours in the field, giving up errors in the third, fourth and fifth innings, gifting the Brethren three runs before they could manage a response in the bottom of the fifth.

Brothers built what looked like a mtach-winning lead in the top of the eighth, highlighted by Jeremy’s Sexton’s third hit and a Jeff Mackney home run over left field.

Going in to the last innings, Workers trailed 8-5 with just three outs in hand.

Dan Clark received a gift with four straight balls and Sam Keehn soon followed him on to base when he was hit by a pitch.

Chris Daley struck out before Martin loaded the bases when he too was hit.

Andrew Carrall endured the pressure to secure the second out when Wayne Devlin sacrificed to left field and scored Clark.

Dallas Knapp’s third double tied the game, but it was a fitting end when Workers coach Scott McClelland brought home the win for his side with a single to right field.

For Brothers, Sexton’s three hits were the best for his side, while Knapp’s hat-trick of doubles was well supported by McClelland’s timely pair of singles.

In the other game, Redbirds had a solid5-1 win over Norths.

Errors cost Norths in the third innings. Jeremy Prosser and Jack Jeffery were aboard after being hit by wayward pitches while Steve Best drew an error with a bunt down the third base line.

Nick Shailes drove in three runs when the Norths left-fielder missed the ball, allowing Redbirds to take a stranglehold on the game.

At 5-0 down, Norths came close to scoring in the sixth when Robbie Pruess walked two and hit another, and relieving pitcher Shailes also struck a batter.

But Redbirds held their nerve, executing a double play when Peter Best snatched a Paul Simes line drive and picked up Matt Vidler before he could return to second.

Shailes tidied up the mess with another magic play, securing a Daniel Muggleton line drive from his toes for the third out.

Norths scored their run in the eighth before Shailes closed down the innings.

They also had their chances in the ninth when Jason Britt and Steve Ross reached base but Shailes again produced the goodson the mound for Redbirds.

Best with the bat for Redbirds was Peter Best with three hits.

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