Michael Dobell almost flawless at Altona for Dragons
A magnificent pitching performance by Michael Dobeli lifted the Doncaster Dragons to an impressive 3-1 won over Sunshine at Altona.
Dobeli, who had pitched in relief on Sunday, threw seven strong innings against Sunshine, allowing eight hits but only one run while striking out three.
The Dragons took an early lead when leadoff batter Scott Couling and DH/coach Chris Hodkinson each singled. Cameron Hubbard walked to load the bases, then Jason Blejwas hit a sharp grounder that the Sunshine third baseman fielded but threw wildly, allowing two runs to score.
In the third inning the Dragons again loaded the bases on a walk to Ken O'Malley and hits to Hubbard and Daniel Passlow. Sean Pascoe singled to rightfield to score O'Malley and extend the lead to 3-0.
Sunshine scored its only run of the game on a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning, and Dobeli pitched effectively to the powerful Sunshine middle order to prevent further damage.
Couling, making his first start of the season, was the offensive star, claiming three hits including the only extra-base hit of the night. Hubbard and Passlow each had two hits.
Pascoe, who had made some spectacular plays in rightfield earlier in the season, donned the catcher's gear for the first time and played a key role, holding on to the ball in a bone-jarring collision to preserve the lead.
- John McDonald