PengWin….Heathmont make it 4 flags in 5 years


Heathmont BC overcome the improving North Balwyn BC to take the title.

By Sally Heppleston

THEY had to do it the hard way after losing the first week of the finals, but Heathmont were able to prevail 6-0 over North Balwyn to take out the Melbourne Winter Baseball League A grade grand final on Saturday at La Trobe University.

After going down to North Balwyn in week one of the finals, Heathmont bounced back last week by defeating Research. Heathmont were too good in the last game of the season, giving them four out of the last five premiership victories.

“It’s a good feeling,” Heathmont coach Matt Gourlay said.

“Our experience really made a difference today, having played in a few grand finals before.

“Nathan Harris pitched the whole game today, for a complete shut out and Matty Wilson and Chris Nicholas had home runs. Really everyone contributed though,” Gourlay said.

Gourlay said there was a great atmosphere at the match and that the conditions were perfect. He said the North Balwyn team had a bright future, having continued to improve throughout the year.

North Balwyn coach Neil Burke said while the wins and losses were spilt evenly between the clubs throughout the year, Heathmont were able to turn it on to win the game that counted.

He said he was incredibly proud of his young team who had improved on their preliminary final showing last year, but that they came up against the “benchmark of the competition” on Saturday.

“We won’t put all our eggs in one basket. We’ve had a great season and we take great joy away from this season. We came up against the best today and they didn’t give us a chance. They got hits when they needed and their pitcher shut us out today. We’ve seen him good before, but not like he was today. We really have to congratulate the Heathmont boys. I think we have a very, very positive future though,” Burke said.

In the B grade grand final, Waverley went down for the fifth year running to Doncaster, 13-11.