Angels spearhead busy week for the BASA
With a couple of weeks off coming up, the Belfast Angels were looking to make a statement on a sunny evening at Henry Jones’ field against one half of the Belfast Softball Club.
And that they did.
With the Aces’ pitcher battling control issues early on, the Angels were happy to take first base by walk or hit. First baseman Melvin Woods however, knew exactly what he intended as soon as he stepped in – a powerful strike to right field helped the Halos to a 9-0 lead by the time the first three outs were recorded.
Wanting to prove to Softball Ulster that they will be as competent in the field as they are at the plate, the visitors quickly shut down the Aces bats, only allowing four runs to plate by the middle of the third. By that time however, the lead had been pushed out to 17-4.
Craven and Slevin were able to empty their bench in the fifth, bringing in Chris Shields, Shane Hanna and Colin Woods to the fray. The latter didnt wait long to send one to deep left field, giving him plenty of time to touch them all.
Moving into the last inning with a 22 run lead, the Aces showed their own fightback, taking advantage of another few errors in the field. The gap however was simply too vast for any extended comeback and the game finished with the Belfast Angels 28-9 to the good.
Next up for the Angels is the Teddy Bear’s Picnic blitz to be held at Strandtown Primary School in what is set to be a busy weekend for the BASA. What is certain however is that strong opposition awaits on 30th May – the Brawlers will be waiting.
A slight change of venue as the Stars and the crosstown Buccaneers await the imminent completion of the first custom-built baseball and softball diamond in the north of Ireland, the Spartans will have to travel a little further, up to Lough Moss Leisure Centre.
Regardless of location, Sean Shackley’s men will be looking for payback from a few weeks ago after losing a slugfest in Dublin 22-13. In that game, the Spartans struck hard and early, getting out ahead 6-0 in the first inning. Constantly playing catchup, the Stars would cut the lead to as little as four before the Dublin side pulled away in the last inning in what was an untidy game that occurred immediately after a famous victory against the Dublin City Hurricanes. Belfast will no doubt be looking for a much tighter defensive effort as they will welcome back Sean McMahon to the lineup. With Stephen Hunter and Christopher Shields acquitting themselves very well at the top of the batting order in the previous games, Shackley will be able to provide a consistent batting order of power and speed as they look to stretch their lead out in the B league North.
In a brave effort against the Donegal/Derry Vipers in their first ever game, the Hogs held an experienced Viper side to a 6-0 lead for over three quarters of the game before fatigue and the sheer depth of the opposition squad pulled away to finish the game 27-0 to the good.
Sunday’s opponent will be no less of a handful as the Wexford Eagles fly into Newforge, already looking down at the Hogs the Irish American Football Association division 2. Two weeks ago they kickstarted their own 2016 season with a 34-8 victory over the North Dublin Pirates in Wexford.
With the Vipers topping the table with two victories already, the Razorbacks know they will need a good result to keep within touching distance of the division lead. They will hope for a noisy crowd to cheer them on in their inaugural home game.
By Neil Boyd
If you’d like to know more about Angels softball, Northstars baseball and Razorbacks football, visit www.belfastbaseball.co.uk or follow the teams on Facebook and Twitter.
#GoHalos #GoStars #GoHogs