IC CUP Final Day - ‘Pleading the 5th’ – Aussies close out tournament in style
‘Pleading the 5th’ – Aussies close out tournament in style
The 3-2 win was indicative of Australia’s 2006 campaign, as is represented the fifth one-run game that the Aussies played during the tournament – a clear sign that had a few more things gone their way, the Aussies may have finished the tournament amongst the medals.
Wayne Lundgren was saddled with the starting duties and again proved solid, giving up two runs, on four hits, while striking out five during his four innings of work. The two runs Lundgren allowed both came in the third inning and staked the Italians an early lead.
But thanks to the continued offensive prowess of WA’s Ben Risinger and Luke Hughes, the Aussies managed to claw their way back into contention, scoring 1 run in each of the 4th, 5th and 6th innings respectively, to take what would ultimately prove the decisive 3-2 lead.
Risinger hit a solo blast in the 4th and later doubled and Hughes finished the day 3 for 3 to pace the Aussies’ eight-hit attack. For the tournament, the two lads from the West were outstanding – combining to hit .500 (21-42) with 5 doubles, a triple, 3 home runs and 13 RBIs.
Equally impressive in yesterday’s performance was LHP Tim Cox, who bounced back from a couple of shaky appearances earlier in he tournament to shut down any hope of an Italian resurgence.
Cox allowed just one hit and struck out six, in four scoreless frames before handing over to another WA native,
The win saw
In addition to the performances by Hughes, Cox and Wise against
Adam Blackley’s 12.2 scoreless innings, David Sutherland’s team leading 8 RBIs, Tristan Loetzsch’s 1.00 ERA and Donovan Hendrick’s tireless work out of the Aussie bullpen all bode well for our chances in the future – especially when you consider the cavalcade of stars still eligible for Australian representation as we move closer to Beijing 2008.
The Australian team will return home on Tuesday to close out what for many of them has been a very long and arduous season in 2006. But the well earned break certainly won’t last too long, as the majority of the Aussie squad will be seen in action again during the 2007 Claxton Shield and Oceanic qualifying series held early next year.
Be sure to stay tuned to www.baseball.com.au for all the updates on the busy summer schedule.