by Gus Underwood
STANHOPE continued its impressive start to the season, losing only one wicket chasing down Echuca’s competitive score of 6/165.
Craig Emmett, who was unbeaten on 72 off 102 deliveries, shared an opening stand of 49 with Matt Evans (20) and then an unbroken partnership of 117 with Steve Hall who finished with an unconquered 42 not out.
Talented young opener Mason Scopiletti made 65 and Ben Squires an unbeaten 59 with seven boundaries to set up a win for Cooma over Girgarre.
Andrew Melverton with 46 and Andrew Medhurst with 20 didn’t get enough support to challenge Cooma’s score with Girgarre coming up 69 runs short.
Tongala’s modest score of 8/121, highlighted by 42 from veteran Travis Johnstone, was good enough to get the premiership points against Echuca, restricted to 9/101.
Johnstone also stepped up with the ball for Tongala taking 4/13 off seven overs.
Fire Brigade’s batsmen were up to the challenge of scoring 147 to get the points against Moama with five batsmen getting into the 20s.
In the other game Northern United had the better of Rochester Gold.
Matt Owen with 94 and his opening batting partner Brad Caldwell (29) set up a winning score of 5/234 for Tongala against Girgarre.
Scott Fitzallen with 43 and Darren Butler (37) gave their side a chance at one stage of getting into the game but got no support as Girgarre fell for 145.
Fire Brigade, led by Brendan White and Andrew Stockdale, posted an easy win over Echuca South.
After an opening stand of 47 between Michael Mott (21) and Jordan Northausen (24), White opened the shoulders to slam 66 off 61 balls with eight fours and three sixes.
Then Andrew Stockdale took over to clout an unbeaten 59 including six fours and two sixes off just 43 balls as the Brigade posted 5/256.
White completed a big day by claiming three wickets along with Barty Carver to help dismiss South for just 52 in 24.3 overs.
Cooma’s score of 84 of which Logan Bamford-Phillis made 37 was an easy target for Northern United who lost just three wickets in securing the win.
With Sam Dearing picking up four wickets and Jason Snelling three Rushworth skittled Stanhope for just 55 in 11 overs to set up a win for their side.
Rushworth lost four wickets in covering this score, with 23 from opener Daniel Newton ensuring his side of the premiership points.
In the other two games BLU was too good for Rochester while Echuca had the better of Moama.
Half centuries to Braydon Kearns and Dayne and Beauden Webber ensured Stanhope got the premiership points against Echuca.
Echuca was never in a position to challenge Stanhope’s score of 7/263 and was restricted to 9/115 due mainly to Cobey Aynsley’s burst of 4/11 off eight overs.
After making 2/146, Fire Brigade skittled BLU for 85 to record a comfortable win.
Openers Shannon Fleming with a half century and Tim Dunne (41) did best with the bat for the Flames while Nic Jephson took the honours with the ball with 4/12 off five overs.
Rushworth’s score of 6/114, highlighted by a half century from Tom Stevens, was good enough to get the points against Echuca South.