By William Ysaguirre, Free Lance Reporter
The Guardian Bombers hammered the Oceana Strikers 9-4 to win the National Men’s Championships held at the Rogers Stadium in Belize City on Saturday and Sunday, March 29-30.
The Bombers collected six hits off Striker pitcher Jerome Carr, who also walked nine batters. Bombers soon led 4-0 when Carlyon Flores, pitcher Milton Flores, Jerome Moir and Shane Williams scored in the bottom of the first inning.
Onofre Myvett scored for the Strikers in the top of the second inning, but the Bombers extended their lead to 8-1 when Carlyon Flores and Shaquille Moody scored in the bottom of the second and Milton and Nelbert Flowers hit consecutive out of the park homers.
The Strikers tried to catch up as Floyd Flowers and Jose Itza scored in the top of the fifth, but Nelbert Flowers scored again in the bottom of the sixth to lead 9-3, and only Bruce Hilton scored for the Strikers in the top of the seventh.
The Strikers had won 11-10 over the Cayo district champions: Belmopan Bombers on Saturday, with Floyd Flowers scoring four runs, including the winning run in the seventh inning. Oscar Rios and Marconi Leal each scored two runs, while Anthony Blair, Rayan Rowland and pitcher Konrad Gonzalez each scored once. Belmopan’s Troy Williams, Francisco Gutierrez, Deon Richards and Randy Joseph each scored two runs, while Deon Guzman and Stephen “Muerte” Williams scored once each.
The Strikers however fell 10-1 in Saturday’s nightcap. Pitcher Konrad Gonzalez struck out 12 batters, but Milton Flores led the Guardian attack scoring in the first, third and fifth innings. Carlyon Flores and Alex Flores each scored two runs, while Nelbert Flowers, Michael Middleton and Shane Williams each scored in the seventh inning. Only Floyd Flowers Jr. scored for the Strikers in the third inning.
Gonzalez struck out seven batters to completely shut out Belmopan for a 15-0 win by mercy rule on Sunday afternoon. The Strikers led by 10 when the entire diamond scored in the first inning, Oscar Rios scored in the second inning and Leal, Rowland, Blair and Floyd Flowers scored again in the third inning.
International Softball Hall of Famer Patricia Bennett, a member of Belize’s gold-medal team of the 70’s, was on hand to present team trophies and medals to the champions and sub-champions and individual awards.
Striker shortstop Marconi Leal won awards for Best Batting Average, Most Runs Batted In: 12) Most Home Runs (and the Most Valuable Player award. Leal shared the home run award with Milton Flores, Nelbert Flowers and Onofre Myvett who had each hit a home run.
Milton Flores won the award for Best Pitcher with the Most wins. Carlyon Flores won the award for Most Stolen Bases and Konrad Gonzalez took the award for Most Strikeouts (25).