Baseball: Swan Hill Aces looking for glory at State Championships

Stock image.
Stock image.

BASEBALL fever is going strong for the Swan Hill Aces, who are looking to better their heroic effort in making the National Baseball Championship final last year.

Before they can do that though, the Aces will need to negotiate through the Western Australian State Championships, which will be taking place over a five-day period between March 29 and April 2 at Mateljian Park, Madeley.

Last year, the Metros took out the WA title to qualify for the National Championships, alongside the Aces, Phantoms and Firebirds.

This year five WA teams are assured entry to the National Championships, which will be held in Lismore, NSW.

Swan Hill Aces President Michael Carter said he is excited ahead of the championships and the prospect of qualifying for Nationals as champions.

“We believe that our team is well prepared and stand a good chance of being successful and we are looking forward to the challenge.”

The Swan Hill Aces were established in 2009 and is made up of three separate baseball clubs, Swan District, Victoria Park/Belmont and Eastern Hills.

Since then, they have made two grand final appearances at the National Championships in recent years, having made it to the 2015 and 2017 deciders before falling short.

“We believe that our never say die philosophy will ultimately see us take that final step, not just in the Little League majors division but in all divisions that we compete in,” Carter said.

He also believes that the team has an experienced and capable coaching staff that have helped guide them to success.

“All our teams have a great mix of experience that enables us to be well prepared for tournament play,” he said.

“Most teams are practicing 2-3 times per week, playing warm-up tournaments and scrimmage games leading up to the State Championships and this will continue right through to respective National Championships in May/June, assuming teams qualify,” he said.

The pre-state tournament will take place at Hourglass Reserve in Rockingham this weekend.

Carter said that the club and coaches are working hard to achieve team depth and not rely on one or two players to ensure success.

“Every team has between 12-13 players that are capable of doing something special. Every member of the team is equally valued regardless of their role on the team, whether we win or lose,” he said.

Should the Aces qualify for nationals and win the tournament in Lismore, they will then travel to compete in America for the Little League World Series, aired on ESPN, in August.

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