From the beginning of the season, the Huronia Grey Jays have struggled to field a full team and not being able to settle into a regular roster.
The same difficulty occurred when they travelled to Wasaga Beach last week. The team was short three players and had only 10 of the standard 11 players in SLO-Pitch play.
This meant shuffling players around to fill the gaps. This resulted in the entire right side of the defence, both infield and outfield, having players playing in unfamiliar positions. Not surprisingly this led to an unusual number of errors, both mental and physical.
Despite this problem, the Jays put in a good show and kept both games close.
In the first game, Wasaga began by hitting predominantly to the right side of the Jays defence and took advantage of the inexperience on that side to score the maximum five runs and lead 5 to 2 after the first inning.
Wasaga was able to do the same in the 5th and 6th innings for a 22 to 11 lead after 6. But the Grey Jays refused to give up and produced 5 runs in the 7th for a final score of 22-16.
The Grey Jays defence was much more comfortable in the second game and reduced the errors considerably.
They also made some terrific defensive plays with left fielder Tom Rankin tracking down several well hit flies to left and Tim Sweeting making a leaping catch of a line drive at shortstop. After six innings Wasaga held a 16 -14 advantage but the Jays got one more in the 7th.
The Jays hitting was strong in both games with a total of 61 hits and based on that production should have expected a better outcome. The offensive standout was Ken Lockhart who was on base in all nine at bats.
Simcoe-Muskoka SLO-Pitch Standings
Barrie Green 16 wins 2 losses 32pts
Orillia 26 wins 13 wins 5 losses 26pts
Barrie Blue 11 wins 5 losses 22pts
Wasaga 4 wins 8 losses 8pts
Grey Jays 3 wins 13 losses 6pts
Bracebridge 3 wins 13 losses 6pts