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Shock the Sox: Canberra pull off big rally late
Cavalry come from five down in ninth to extra-innings win
12/10/2012 2:59 AM ET
Cavalry players celebrate after their stunning Sunday victory.
Cavalry players celebrate after their stunning Sunday victory. (Joe Vella / SMP Images)
SYDNEY, 9 December - The Sydney Blue Sox (9-9) blew a five-run lead in the ninth inning before surrendering one run in the 10th as the Canberra Cavalry driven by Rolfe Renault (10-7) took the final game of the four-game series 7-6 on a rainy Sunday afternoon at Blacktown International Sportspark.

With the Blue Sox holding a 6-1 lead in the ninth inning, the Cavalry scored five runs on five hits and two walks to tie the game. Then in the tenth inning, Kody Hightower singled to left field, scoring Josh Matavesi and giving Canberra a 7-6 advantage and a 3-1 series win.

The Cavalry fought back after Sydney jumped out to a 5-0 lead. The Blue Sox scored in the first inning without recording a hit when Zac Shepherd walked with the bases loaded. Then in the third the Sox scored three unearned runs as Shepherd singled home two runs and Trent D'Antonio scored Boss Moanaroa on a sacrifice fly for a 4-0 lead. In the sixth, Chris Snelling doubled home David Kandilas to open up the five-run advantage.

Canberra got a run back in the seventh inning on an RBI-single from Ben Warner but the Blue Sox answered right back in the bottom half of the frame on a JD Williams single.

That set the stage for the visitors, who exploded for five runs in the ninth, highlighted on RBI-doubles from Jack Murphy and KC Hobson and an RBI-triple from Marcus Knecht.

Dustin Loggins (2-1) earned the win for Canberra, tossing a scoreless bottom of the ninth inning while Sean Toler picked up his seventh save of the season, shutting the door in the 10th after allowing a leadoff single. Todd Van Steensel (1-3) absorbed the loss, allowing the winning run to score in the 10th.

The loss spoiled a fantastic outing by Tim Atherton for Sydney, who threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing just four hits and striking out four against his former team. Dae-Sung Koo also tossed a scoreless inning out of the bullpen for the home side. 17-year-old Shepherd tallied two hits, a run scored and two RBIs while James Robbins and Williams also finished with two hits apiece for the Sox.

Sydney returns to action this Thursday as they hit the road to take on the two-time defending champion Alcohol. Think Again Perth Heat in a four-game series.

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.