Makea father-son combo triumphant
Hawke's Bay Hall of Famer and multiple world champion Thomas Makea was a member of the Poneke-Kilbirnie team which won the New Zealand Softball Classic in Hastings at the weekend.
Makea, 45, a four-time world champion with the Black Sox and a former Junior Black Sox coach was the second-string pitcher for his son, Black Sox player Reilly Makea, and a designated player in the batting line-up. He played first base in the final of the seven-team Classic at Akina Park yesterday which saw the Wellington side beat Hawke's Bay's Saints 4-3.
Early in the final Saints led 2-0 following a home run from former Junior Black Sox utility Jacob Zurcher. In their respective semifinals Saints beat Miramar 2-0 and Poneke-Kilbirnie beat defending champions Porirua United 4-3.
It took a home run from Black Sox power hitter Jerome Raemaki in the bottom of the final inning to give Poneke-Kilbirnie their victory against Porirua United. Former Black Sox pitcher Thomas Cameron and former Samoan international Joel Harris were also on the Poneke-Kilbirnie roster.
Classic organiser Craig Waterhouse said Saints 2-1 win against fellow Hawke's Bay side Mets on Friday night was pivotal in their march to the final. Mets had an early 1-0 lead after former Black Sox utility Jovaan Hanley scored.
Saints equalised courtesy of an automatic home run from Black Sox training squad pitcher Adam Woon. Auckland pick-up player Brosdie Boyce, who played second base and second-string pitcher to Woon, scored the winning run.
Mets, with a father-and-son combo of Luke and Xaviar Herrick on the roster, did well to beat Porirua 4-2 in pool play. Kane Herbert smashed a home run for Mets in this match.
Porirua United and Miramar finished third equal, Mets fifth, Maraenui Pumas sixth and Fast Pitch seventh.
"We were thrilled with how competitive the four Hawke's Bay teams were against the three Wellington teams. Hopefully Softball New Zealand takes note of these results and give Hawke's Bay's application to play in the National Fast Pitch Championship again the thumbs up," Waterhouse said.