The top baseball talent in the country put their skills on display at the Australian Women’s Baseball Showcase and it continued into its second and final day. The Adelaide Giants and Brisbane Bandits each picked up a win on Day 1 of the series at Bennett Field in West Beach and Day 2 saw the series be split as the two sides each produced another victory.
Game 3 – Adelaide Giants 22 v Brisbane Bandits 5
Adelaide started hot in the first game of the day, piling on six runs to begin its top half of the first inning with doubles to Claire O’Sullivan and Carly Moore, driving home a pair of runs each.
Lianna Davidson was then able to shut out the Brisbane batters despite the first three for the Bandits getting on base. With the bases loaded, Davidson struck out Abbey McLellan before a double play ended the inning.
Adelaide chose to use its powerplay in the second inning looking to increase an already hefty lead and it paid off; with the Giants putting in 10 runs.
A two-RBI double from Maddison Tabrett and back-to-back RBI singles to Tahnee Lovering and Genevieve Beacom started the run-fest. Abbey Kelly pulled a ball over the left-field fence that brought in a further three runs to the Giants.
Kaila Borgomastro, despite grounding out saw a run score on the contact before Tabrett collected another two RBIs with a single up the middle into centrefield. Lovering flew out to end the barrage of runs.
A three-up, three-down second inning saw Brisbane head back into the field just as quickly as they had come off. Morgan Doty struck out Elodie O’Sullivan and Maddison Heath in quick succession before Maddison Patrick grounded out to second base.
Brisbane went to the bullpen to start the third inning where Adelaide still lead 16-0, Brianna Jones being handed the ball. The first two batters each went down before a walk to Moore saw the Giants with a baserunner however the Bandits claimed the final out when Kelly caught a Lili Cavanagh flyball.
Brisbane opted to use its powerplay to start the bottom of the third but a hit to third base from lead-off Hannah Marshall saw Tabrett play her base to claim the leading runner for the first out of the inning.
A hit into centrefield from Doty loaded the bases for Brisbane before scoring its first run of the day when Taylah Welch was hit by an O’Sullivan pitch. Adelaide got out another bases-loaded jam to lead 16-1 after the third inning when Abbey McLellan grounded out to shortstop.
Ticara Geldenhuis got a lead-off single for Adelaide to start the fourth inning. Geldenhuis scored from first on an outfield hit from Borgomastro with a wayward throw towards home plate looking to get the leading runner.
The throw went to the backnet which allowed Borgomastro to stand up at third. Borgomastro scored on a two-run home run to Tabrett after O’Sullivan was struck out looking.
Back-to-back walks for Brisbane started its fourth inning before Amy Collins grounded out to shortstop, each of the baserunners advancing into scoring positions.
Wagner scored on a Patrick groundout for Brisbane’s second run of the game and had scored its third run when Marshall got a safe hit to score O’Sullivan. A two-run home run to Doty scored her and Marshall and suddenly the Bandits had four runs in the inning.
A lead-off double up the third-base line into left field was how Adelaide started the fifth inning through Kelly. Moore got to first when a skied ball was lost in the sun by centre fielder Doty and the bases were loaded when Cavanagh singled.
Geldenhuis drew a walk that saw Kelly score Adelaide’s 20th run of the game and back-to-back singles from Maddison Erwin and O’Sullivan scored Moore and Cavanagh, respectively before the game was called due to timing.
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Game 4 – Brisbane Bandits 10 v Adelaide Giants 5
In stark contrast to the three Showcase games before this one, neither side managed to find a score within the first two frames despite having runners in scoring position.
The first run of the game went to Adelaide at the top of the third when Kaila Borgomastro hit a ball into right field to score Ticara Geldenhuis.
Wanting to get some runs of their own, the Bandits used their powerplay in response at the bottom of the third. Maddison Patrick and Hannah Marshall started on second and first base, respectively.
A bounding ball over the head and glove of Geldenhuis at centrefield allowed both Patrick and Marshall to score on a Morgan Doty single. Doty, trying for second was tagged out before she got to the base, but Brisbane still took a 2-1 lead at that point.
Elodie O’Sullivan singled as Taylah Welch and Abbey McLellan each drew a walk to load the bases. With Laura Wagner up at the plate, Adelaide’s manager chose to swap pitchers, Alice Prokopec coming onto the mound.
Wagner drew the third base-on-balls in a row and her second of the afternoon, which brought O’Sullivan home as Brisbane’s third run of the game.
The Bandits cleared the bases and extended their lead to six runs when Maddison Heath hit a grand slam over the fence in center-right.
A seven-run inning by Brisbane was enough for Adelaide to use its powerplay in the fourth inning, Borgomastro starting on second base and O’Sullivan at first, each moving one base on an Abbey Kelly hit.
Tahnee Lovering brought home two runs with a safe hit into centre-right field that cut the Brisbane lead down. Base-on balls loaded the bases as Aislinn Morris came to the plate as the tying run.
Bandit Jordan Richardson left the mound, to be replaced by Bronwyn Gell with none out. Genevieve Beacom headed up to the plate but lined out to centrefield. Carly Moore had a hit drop inside fair territory, scoring one more but claiming a force-out at second.
Geldenhuis hit another RBI single as pinch-runner Lili Cavanagh crossed home safely, making it a two-run deficit however a flyball to right field from Shae Lilywhite was caught for the final out of the dig.
Marshall, Doty, and O’Sullivan loaded the bases for the Bandits to start the fourth innings of theirs, forcing a pitching change for the Giants, Belinda Cannington entering the game.
Brisbane extended its lead with a Richardson infield single. After a McLellan caught flyball was the first out, Wagner got her first hit of the game that scored a run.
A sacrifice fly out to left field scored other Bandits run-on contact made by Heath before a ground out to Neads ended the game.
At the conclusion of Game 3, the Spirit of the Game award went to Brisbane’s Morgan Doty. Adelaide’s Tahnee Lovering was presented with the Spirit of the Game award after Game 4.