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Goodwood surges to SABL premiership
Starting pitcher Matt Watkins named series MVP
03/25/2018 3:45 AM ET
Goodwood celebrates winning the 2017/18 SABL Div 1 Premiership.
Goodwood celebrates winning the 2017/18 SABL Div 1 Premiership. (Baseball SA)

Goodwood has won the 2017/18 SABL Division 1 Grand Final Series, presented by VIVA Global, with an emphatic 19-1 victory over Port Adelaide as pitcher Matt Watkins was named series MVP at Diamond Sports.

After a pair of 5-4 ballgames saw the series level at 1-1, Goodwood came out firing with a three-run homer to Stefan Welch in the first inning just a sign of what was to come.

On the back of 6 1/3 shutout innings by Watkins, they surged home with a grand slam to Simon Galpin highlighting an eight run scoring spree in the seventh inning.

The title is Goodwood's first for their Division 1 side since the 2012/13 season.

From the very start they showed no mercy against Port's starting pitcher, Dushan Ruzic, who was pumped for six hits and eight runs, but errors proved to be the biggest weakness for the Magpies.

Committing seven errors, at one point they conceded seven consecutive unearned runs.

Josh Cakebread scored on a dropped flyball by Joe Deroche-Duffin in the second inning, with Welch also bringing home the unearned run of Deroche-Duffin for a 6-0 lead.

More unearned runs followed in the third with Cameron Langley coming home after surviving on a throwing error by short stop Dylan Brammer, while Owen Hughes added the eighth run on a wild pitch.

An unsteady performance from Brammer helped hand Goodwood a ninth run in the following inning before the mercy rule was brought into play when Langley and Dennis Christiansen scored in the fifth.

Leading 11-0, it was all going Goodwood's way with a four hit performance by Welch headlining their offensive prowess, and a trio of hits to Langley saw him make-up for a quiet Saturday.

On Port Adelaide's side, their bullpen was unable to make an impact, whether it was Duncan Izaaks or Adam Crabb. Crabb had the toughest day out in the seventh with Goodwood rattling off seven straight base hits.

That run of form saw the lead blow out to 15-0 before Galpin stepped up to loaded bases and put the icing on the cake with a grand slam against another reliever, Jack Stead.

After stepping into the game with the bases loaded, there was little Stead could do, however he bounced back to collect the three outs, before hitting a single in the bottom of the seventh.

With Patrick Inglis hitting a double, Port finally had some momentum when pinch-hitter Tim Ward brought him home. It was an emotional moment for Ward, who then exited the game for a pinch-runner, hugging his teammates as he left which suggested he has played his last game for the Division 1 side.

Port then loaded the bases against reliever Luke Keogh, however it was all too late with Keogh striking out Luke Rackebrandt to seal the title.

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.