The future of Victorian softball took centre stage last weekend at the 2017 Under 15 Victorian Softball Championships at Gilbert Park Reserve, Knoxfield.
Over 220 of the state’s best junior softball players competed in the competition, with 13 state associations represented across the weekend.
In the Under 15 Girls, 11 teams were split between two evenly contested divisions – Cup and Plate.
In the five-team Cup competition, Waverley went through their five-game campaign undefeated on the way to the Under 15 Girls State title.
After a Round 1 bye, Waverley stamped their authority on the rest of the competition with convincing wins over Northern District and Casey on Saturday, before registering hard fought victories against Albury Wodonga and Werribee in the lead up to Sunday’s Grand Final.
Their opponents in the Cup competition decider, Albury Wodonga, proved their credentials with two wins, one loss and a draw in their preliminary round matches. In the end however, the girls from Waverley were too strong in Grand Final, taking out a 14-5 victory.
Under 15 Girls Cup competition results can be found here.
In the Plate competition, Dandenong and Knox quickly established themselves as the two dominate teams with four wins and a draw each in of their pool matches, and it was no surprise to see the two meet in the Grand Final on Sunday afternoon.
It was Knox however that would keep their unbeaten record intact for the entirety of the competition; winning the Under 15 Girls Plate title decider 6-4.
Under 15 Girls Plate competition results can be found here.
In the Under 15 Boys, a powerful Albury Wodonga unit took all before them on their way to the Under 15 Boys State Cup title.
After a round of pool matches on Saturday, the top two teams of the respective Blue and White pools moved into the Cup competition on the Sunday, while the remaining teams fought it out for honours in the Plate competition.
After progressing through their Saturday pool matches with a minimum of fuss, Albury Wodonga headed to the Cup competition on Sunday joined by the other remaining undefeated outfit in Sunshine, as well as Frankston and Werribee.
With convincing victories in each of their three matches on Sunday, the country boys entered their Cup Grand Final clash with Frankston as strong favourites having recorded strong wins in their two previous games against the Peninsula outfit (12-1 and 17-2) earlier in the competition.
Despite the heavy losses to their Grand Final opponents, Frankston carried in strong momentum with convincing victories over Werribee and Sunshine in the lead up to the decider, and their new-found confidence was on display as they pushed Albury Wodonga all the way.
In the end however, Albury Wodonga had too much class and secured a well-deserved Under 15 Boys State Championship with a 5-2 victory.
Under 15 Boys Cup competition results can be found here.
The Boys Plate competition was taken out by Waverley, who got the better of a hard fought Grand Final match-up with Sunbury.
Both teams won through to Sunday’s title game on superior percentage, with Waverley, Sunbury and Casey all finishing on two wins and a loss each for the day.
As expected, the decider was tightly contested, with Waverley eventually taking the spoils, 11-6.
Under 15 Boys Plate competition results can be found here.
State Softball Championship action now turns to the Under 19s, which will be hosted by the Keilor Park Softball Association on March 11-12.