The Herts Falcons clashed with reigning National Baseball League champions Harlow Nationals in a repeat of last year’s national final – and it proved to be another dramatic encounter.
The first game of the double-header went right down to the wire but Herts held on for a 3-2 win.
Mike Osborn was the winning pitcher while Ryan Bird picked up the save. The team needed a solid pitching performance as their bats were kept quiet by a Harlow team which appears to be picking up speed as the race for the play-offs reaches boiling point.
In the second game of the clash, the Herts Falcons found themselves 5-4 down going into the penultimate inning.
With time running out they scored four runs, which included a home run by Chilean national team player Cristobal Hiche – his third of the season.
That proved to be enough as Ryan Bird came in to pitch an inning and a third to shut the door again on the Nationals and secure a second win of the day.
The two victories keep the Falcons in top spot in the standings, but they are followed closely by the London Mets and the Southampton Mustangs, knowing that only two of these three teams will qualify automatically for the post-season.
The other will have to go through the lottery of the play-offs.
Elsewhere, Herts Baseball Club’s other teams in action on Sunday also secured wins.
The Herts Hawks swept the South London Pirates to move into the play-off places in the AA League.
The win featured a home run by Andy Cornish from Hemel Hempstead.
The club’s fourth team, the Herts Raptors, continued their winning run with a win over the Essex Archers which keeps them top of the Single-A League.