2015 was certainly a rollercoaster year for the Royals in the league. A season that started with a real bang as the Royals scored 11 runs in their very first at bat against the Farnham Flames. That game ended with the Royals scoring another 11 runs to register a 34-17 win and a very positive start. The shape of the season was brought into context in the next game. A tough away trip to BA Jets is never the Royals favourite away day and this one proved to be one of the worst. A 24-1 defeat would be the worst the Royals would suffer all season and be the poorest they would play.
Next up came RG Blue Sox 1 and for 4 innings the Royals looked to have overcome the previous weeks result as they surged into a 19-8 lead. However, RG produced a thrilling come back and took the game 21-20 in the last inning. This defeat was equally as frustrating as the week before and traveling to RP for week 4 the Royals needed to bounce back quickly. The 28-7 win was to be one of the high points of the season and one of the best overall league performance. This was the perfect way to setup a visit the 2014 Champions. 12 months ago the Royals had held Farnham Phoenix to a 20-20 draw. In 2015 the Phoenix repeated the feat of scoring 20 runs, however the Royals could only manage 5 leaving the Royals on 2-3 going into a crucial game against the Wildcats. The Royals needed a win, even this early in the season, and with the Wildcats having won on their previous three visits, this was not going to be easy and so it turned out. As with the RG game, the Royals raced into a 17-3 lead only to see the Wildcats fight back in the last inning. A very nervous 7th inning saw the Wildcats just fall short and this time the Royals won 21-20.
Going into the halfway point the Royals were on a rollercoaster, great moments followed by terrible ones. The Wildcat game had had all of those, but a win was a real boost. However, this wasn’t to last, the following weeks trip to the Knights was another poor away display, the 18-3 defeat started a run of poor results. The reverse fixture saw the Royals in another 1 run game, this time the Farnham Flames raced into a 9-5 lead and the Royals had fight back, but again lost out 17-16. Unable to field a team against BA, the Royals travelled to RG having lost 3 in a row. This became 4 in a row as they Royals again let another team jump out to a big lead. A 7 run 7th inning put some respectability in the 17-15 score, but little else.
The last month of the season came with the Royals needed wins to avoid a potential relegation battle. This last month proved to be the best of the year, and but for some back luck they almost won all four of the of their games. First up the Royals completed the double over RP, winning 22-7 and easing any fear of relegation. A narrow 11-8 defeat against the Farnham Phoenix was more down to an injury that caused a formation change than anything. The penultimate game of the season saw the Royals travel to their favourite away ground, local rivals the Wildcats. This was another profitable trip down to Bray and the 22-2 win guaranteed Division 1 softball for 2016. The last game saw the Royals save the best for last, the 8-4 win against the Windsor Knights was a solid overall performance and something to remember going into 2016.
The Royals ended 2015 in 5th place, winning 6 and losing 8 games. It could have been so much more, the Royals having had several chances to win more. Too often the Royals only played a few innings out of the 7. At times they were very good, but too often they gave teams a 4 or 5 inning start or fell away from the 5th inning. Not at all like the way the team played in the tournaments and most notably in the Diamond Series. To put in a more serious challenge in 2016, consistency will be the main area to work on
The inconsistency of the year was highlighted in the MVP voting. Whereas the Rebels and Marvlovians were unanimous in their voting the Royals had four candidates across the league and club. Kai Benaim and Dallas Huntley represented the club at the All-Star game, while Julia Barlow, for a 4th time, and Grant Bergman won the Club MVP awards.
Missed Parts 1 to 5?
- Club Review of the Year Part 1. Where 2015 Began – Maidenhead Royals Indoors
- Club Review of the Year Part 2. Introducing Softball via the MSC Newlands Satellite Club
- Club Review of the Year Part 3. MSC Development Team at the Raiders Tournament
- Club Review of the Year Part 4. Maidenhead Rebels Season Review
- Club Review of the Year Part 5. Marlovians break top four
What is Softball?
Co-ed slowpitch softball is a social and enjoyable game that’s easy to learn and play, even for people who are not “athletes” or don’t have much experience of team sports.
Softball is a lot like baseball in terms of the rules, but because the ball is pitched slowly to each batter (as the name implies!), it’s easy to hit the ball and succeed at the sport’s central skill. The fact that men and women play together in the same team and on an equal level gives the sport a social buzz, and most softball games are followed by sessions at the local pub!
Come and Get Involved
All sessions are free, no experience needed and all equipment to get you going is supplied.
For all under-18’s attending, a parent must be in attendance at the beginning of the first session to sign permission paperwork.