Le Hunte 9/180 def Far West 11/154
Le Hunte ended their Horgan Shield campaign with a 26-run victory over Far West at Wudinna on Saturday.
The extras column helped Le Hunte to post 9/190, with the visitors falling short in the run chase to end on 11/154, in a match rescheduled from earlier this month due to the heat.
Le Hunte captain Kysen Shepperd called correctly at the toss and had no hesitation in opening the batting.
However, the captain may have been left ruing his decision as with the second ball of the game Zac Lovegrove bowled Phoenix Foster for a duck.
Just seven balls later Zac Skipworth was returning to the pavilion having been bowled by a Taij Kaehne full toss for just three, reducing Le Hunte to 2/4.
The Far West boys were up and about yet Shepperd and Saxon O’Brien steadied the Le Hunte ship, with the former using the pace of the Far West bowlers to guide anything wide to the boundary.
The Far West bowlers struggled to maintain line and length and the number of wides being bowled started to become a worrying trend.
O’Brien was then well caught by Lovegrove at gully slashing at a wide ball from Kaehne for nine.
Jackson Petty joined captain Shepperd, 24 runs, at the wicket and their partnership was founded on good running between the wickets, with the score getting to 63 when Jesse Pittaway accepted a Shepperd tickle from an expansive drive off the bowling of Lovegrove.
Cameron Tomney was caught and bowled by Lovegrove for five and the chirpy Darci Best was caught at leg gully by Blake Kenny off Lovegrove for a duck, which left Le Hunte at 6/75.
The match-defining partnership of 67 between young guns Petty and Ezra Foster challenged the Far West bowlers, with captain Kenny trying multiple bowling changes without success to find a breakthrough.
Foster hit anything short on his legs to the boundary and their running between wickets was impressive, but it did prove to also be their downfall as a run on a misfield saw Kaehne return the ball to Pittaway behind the stumps to find Petty short of his ground for a well-made 28, taking Le Hunte to 7/142.
The next wicket soon followed as Jake Mullins was bowled by Jacob Beattie for a duck.
Foster and Baker put on 23 runs, with extras helping to keep the runs ticking over as wide balls became a dirge the Far West bowlers could not rid themselves of.
Le Hunte were then 9/167 as Foster eventually fell pulling a short ball to deep fine leg, well caught by Kade Maddigan off the bowling of Kaehne for a team high of 36.
Toby Baker and Nathan Davis finished 10 and two not out as Le Hunte finished their allotted 50 overs with 180 runs on the board.
Ezra Foster’s 38 and Petty’s 28 were the best for Le Hunte, whose batting total was helped by Far West bowling a massive 48 wides, while Lovegrove took 4/24 and Kaehne chipped in with 3/46.
Lovegrove and Beattie began the Far West run chase, but Beattie was bowled by Tomney for just one run in the second over.
Kyan Saunders joined the strong-driving Lovegrove and the pair put on 30 runs before Saunders was caught by Tomney for eight off the bowling of O’Brien.
Far West was 2/34 as captain Kenny joined Lovegrove at the crease and the pair produced a 28-run partnership off five overs before a well-hit lofted drive from Lovegrove on 37 was held by Shepperd at cover to have Far West 3/62.
Kenny and Zac Watson then proceeded to knock the ball into gaps and look for singles, while Kenny was harsh on anything short as Far West moved to 89.
Disaster then struck as Petty’s leg spin had Watson over balancing on a forward defensive stroke and Best had the bails off quickly with Watson not grounding his back foot in time to be out for two.
Kenny was gone two runs later leg before wicket to a low Tomney full toss for 24, while Cain Perry came and went as he was caught by Best from another Tomney delivery for a duck to leave the visitors at 6/91.
Tait Johnson joined Kaehne and the pair got the score to 104 before Kaehne was bowled by Tomney for seven.
Johnson was caught in the next over by Baker from a Petty delivery for eight and Wally Parkin lofted a drive to Baker again to give Tomney his fifth wicket and leave Far West teetering at 9/105.
Maddigan joined Pittaway and the pair showed maturity to push and nudge the ball into gaps along with aggressive running between wickets which slowly helped Far West accumulate runs until a cheeky second run saw Maddigan just fail to make his ground.
He was run out to leave Far West 10/130, with the 12th and final batsman to take the crease with 51 runs still needed to win.
Bradley Beattie and Pittaway had a big mountain to climb.
They toiled hard and had help in the form of wayward bowling to see the score creep to 154 before Beattie was bowled by Foster for seven, leaving Pittaway not out on 15.
Lovegrove was the top scorer with 37, while Kenny, 24 runs, and Pittaway were the only others batsmen to reach double figures.
Tomney was impressive with the ball for Le Hunte in taking 5/30, while Petty claimed 2/31 with his leg spin.
Horgan Shield final
Port Lincoln claimed the Horgan Shield for a record equalling sixth time in a dominant display against Eastern Eyre at Centenary Oval earlier this month.
The home side went to the crease first and were all out for 115, however Eastern Eyre were never in the hunt and were bundled out for just 28 runs.
Port Lincoln captain Brodie Drewitt was decisive in making 35 runs and then claiming three wickets.