THE Ocean Grove and St Joseph’s women’s cricket sides head into Christmas tied in first place after both earning narrow wins on Sunday.
St Joseph’s managed to stay undefeated despite East Belmont Deb’s setting them the difficult target of 131.
This was largely thanks to a 103-run stand between Kelly Williams and Chrissy Walker.
But it still did not prove enough as St Josephs passed them to finish their 20 overs 1/138.
St Joseph’s retired some batters throughout their innings, including Liz Tubb whose 33-ball 43 was key to their victory.
St Joseph’s coach Paul Rowe said the difficulty of securing win made the result particularly gratifying.
“We were missing a few players, so for us it was a really good challenge to have some other players step up and show our depth.”
Having previously coached junior girls teams at the club, Rowe is also using the new competition as a chance to help some of the junior players get experience at a higher level.
“It just gives that beautiful mix of age and experience and allows the other women to mentor the girls as well.”
“I just thoroughly enjoy watching the joy on their faces as they get together to play a sport they haven’t been able to in the past.”
Ocean Grove faced Torquay Black in a similarly close match.
Ocean Grove were struggling soon after being sent in to bat. Mikaela Monahan claimed three early wickets to have Ocean Grove 3/36.
Yet Tanya Taylor and Jacqueline Johnston ensured those would be the only wickets Ocean Grove lost, steering their side to a final score of 3/116.
Taylor and Johnston both are unbeaten in the tournament, having each batted four times without being dismissed.
Ocean Grove’s disciplined bowling kept Torquay to 7/100 to secure the win.
Portarlington got their first win of the season in impressive style.
They beat East Belmont Razz by 42 runs having gone their innings without losing a wicket.
Like St Joseph’s, they retired both their openers. Cara Behncke top-scored for them, making 42 not out.
Kylie Hutchinson then led the way for Portarlington with the ball, taking 2/11 in her four overs.
Highton Durran also got their first win of the season, defeating Torquay Gold by 77 runs.
Monique Quinn had a particular good performance, retiring on 40 before taking 2/3 with the ball.
The tournament will resume on January 12.