Black Sox smash Argentina to claim softball crown

Coach Mark Sorenson congratulates star infielder Cole Evans on the way to New Zealand's Challenge Cup victory. Photo / Photosport
Coach Mark Sorenson congratulates star infielder Cole Evans on the way to New Zealand's Challenge Cup victory. Photo / Photosport

The Black Sox stormed to the Challenge Cup softball title with a brilliant 9 - 0 final win over Argentina at Albany.

Wellington pitcher Josh Pettett led the way against Argentina - who beat Japan to make the final - until the Black Sox batters took over at the end of the game.

A Wayne Laulu home run in the sixth innings finished the final off. New Zealand went on a final rampage scoring six runs in the innings, having slowly built up a three run advantage until then.

In their previous meeting Argentina pushed New Zealand to the limit on Saturday night, a dramatic game in which replacement batter Isaac Fletcher hit a grand slam home run to save the Black Sox and send them into the final.

"We saved the best until last," said New Zealand coach Mark Sorenson after the final at Albany, while his opposite Julio Gamarci described the Black Sox as "perfect".

New Zealand led from the second innings when Auckland short stop Cole Evans came home on a throwing error. Campbell Enoka launched a home run off Huemul Mata in the third, and great running from captain Thomas Enoka brought another in the fifth.

Sorenson picked out the performance of pitcher Pettett saying he had started the tournament as a rookie, and finished as the leading man.

- NZ Herald

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