Gladstone solid in Open men's state titles
SOFTBALL: Gladstone's men finished a credible fifth place at the Open Men's State Titles in Toowoomba.
Playing against some teams which even fielded imports, Gladstone coach Randall Noonan says his team showed fight throughout the 10 games.
"Although there were some tight games, we never gave in and probably the difference was that the teams that won those games had imports,” Noonan said.
The nine other teams that competed in the 'B-grade' section of the Toowoomba event were Rockhampton, Toowoomba, Mackay, Caboolture, Logan City (two teams), Brisbane and Bundaberg.
Noonan said Gladstone had standout players and none were better than Brock Finlay, Ryan Smith and Jordan Ludkin.
"Brock and Ryan really carried the team and Jordan was another shining light where he batted well,” Noonan said.
"Ryan Smith pitched most of the time and he also batted really well.”
Despite the mid-table placing and playing against teams with imports, Noonan added he had hoped to be positioned higher.
"A few guys struggled because of the step up in level of competition and we were hoping to be a bit higher,” Noonan said.
"All the teams above us had imports.”
Gladstone's other players were Michael Ludkin, Dylan Hard, Jarrod Nilsson and Noonan said all of the players have had success in the Rockhampton softball competition.
"All of these blokes played for the Stallions and won the grand final against Frenchville which had won the previous four deciders,” Noonan said.
"So it was nice revenge.”
Meanwhile the Gladstone men's softball competition resumes after several years' hiatus.
Teams are not yet finalised, but Noonan said it is likely there will be three teams from Gladstone and a team from Rockhampton.
Noonan added it will be a mid-week competition but the dates have not been confirmed.