Demons Red win Southland club title
The Southland men's club softball title went with the form book as Demons Red claimed the Calder Mackay Shield in the first finals game at Surrey Park.
Demons Red beat Demons Blue 4-1 in the first of two scheduled finals games, but it wasn't an easy win, with the Blue team winning the batting duel eight hits to four, with seven base-runners stranded on base.
Demons Blue scored their run in the top of the first innings when Mark Edmunds was walked to base, gaining second on a hit by Andrew Karsten, third on a Danny Shayler hit, and reaching home plate on a sacrifice by Shawn Coombe.
The Red team started their run chase in the bottom of the second innings.
Mat Telfer hit high and deep to left field, where Michael Sinclair looked to have the catch under control, but the ball spilled out of his glove, leaving Telfer safe on second. Daniel Perry came up with a three-base hit to score Telfer.
William Campbell walked to base in the bottom of the fourth innings and was batted in from a double hit by Daniel Karsten.
Karsten and Tim Flynn added the other two runs to finish the scoring.
Batters for Red were Jonathan Campbell, Karsten, Daniel Perry and Brad Perry (1).
For the Blues, Shayler (3), Chris Telfer, Edmunds, Karsten, Sinclair and Jimmy Affleck (1).
In the Premier A grade, Panthers Wildcats were too strong for Demons, taking out the title 15-2.
Tobi Reid was the top batter for Wildcats, with three hits, followed by Ron Fetolofai and Michael Cade (2), Sam Maher, Darren Tweedie and Russell Keen (1).
The Premier B final was won by ILT Dodgers Mustangs, who easily accounted for St Peters Blue 16-9. Jackie Buckley-Gray had a great day with the bat, going four for four.
Jaynee Hetaraka (3), Sandra Robertson, Hayley Munro and Kelly Braithwaite (2) were the other main contributors for the Mustangs.
Ian Baker and Felix Van der Heydon hit home runs for St Peters.
Odd Sox were the winners of the Premier C grade.
Jonathan Campbell won the MVP award for the Calder Mackay competition, Devon Robinson, from Craftys United, won the overall batting award, and Daniel Perry was the top pitcher.
Daniel Keen took the award for most improved player.
At the end of the awards ceremony, an emotional award was made by the three Campbell brothers - William, Jonathan and Tim - in honour of their late father, Jamie.
Jamie Campbell was one of Southland's finest, a top player for many years and a New Zealand representative.
In a speech made before the trophy was awarded, Jonathan spoke of his father and what the game meant to him.
The trophy was not necessarily for an MVP player, but more for wanting to be the best, being proud of what had been achieved, and playing for the uniform.
A photo of Campbell Sr was also presented to the Southland Softball Association so that a start could be made to a wall of honour for players from Southland chosen to represent their country.
The first recipient of this trophy was Chris Telfer, from Demons Blue.
Top batter for the Premier A grade was Hori Elers (Sr), from ILT Dodgers PK. Top pitcher was Craig Smith, from Panthers Wildcats, and Craig Smith was the MVP.
The Premier B grade's top batter was Fern Lockley, from ILT Dodgers Misfits. Top pitcher was Hana Mitchell, from Fernhill Lime Wallacetown. Lockley was also named MVP.
Kerry Stirling, from Panthers Angels, won the Premier C batting award, Yvonne Couper from Odd Sox was the top pitcher, and Tania Locke won the MVP award.