Top Hawke's Bay women's softball side Dodgers had plenty to celebrate at the weekend.
Dodgers head coach Kevin Gettins has been named as assistant coach of the New Zealand women's team for the third round of the Gilleys and Edebone-Weber Shield Series in Sydney from January 2-6. The White Sox will also include his daughter and Dodgers catcher Melanie Gettins.
"They were looking for someone to give them a hand so I offered," said Gettins, who has been the Junior White Sox assistant coach for the past two years.
It will be the second time this season two members of the Gettins family will cross the Tasman as members of the White Sox team. In October Melanie and her younger sister, pitcher Courtney Gettins, were in the national team which played in the first round of the series in Perth.
Coach Gettins and his troops were also celebrating the fact they are ranked among the top two teams in Wellington's intercity competition after recording two wins and two losses. Hutt Valley's Te Aroha are leading the competition.
On Saturday the Dodgers lost 3-1 to Te Aroha and 8-6 to Hutt Valley Saints after a tie-breaker inning. On Sunday the Dodgers thrashed Newlands 11-0 and Porirua United 11-1.
"Defensive errors cost us in both games on Saturday. But we did well to recover from a 4-0 deficit against Hutt Valley Marist before coming back to 4-all and forcing the tie-breaker," coach Gettins said.
He was impressed with the batting his players produced on Sunday. Centre outfielder Jade Hoskin-Hindmarsh relished her switch to a new role of lead-off batter.
Courtney Gettins pitched in the win against Newlands and gave up two hits while former White Sox pitcher Rita Hokianga, who is home from her college playing commitments in the United States for a month, pitched the win against Porirua.
Meanwhile, Hawke's Bay's top men's team Fast Pitch tasted victory for the first time in three visits to the capital this season with two wins from three games on Sunday. Fast Pitch walloped Hutt Valley Marist 8-1, lost to Miramar 3-1 and beat Hutt Valley Dodgers 5-3 in a match which required a tie-breaker inning in ideal conditions at Fraser Park.
A highlight of Fast Pitch's day was a home run from Canadian outfielder Austin Mark with Taniera Miratana on base. Against Hutt Valley Dodgers the score was 2-all going into the tie-breaker.
"To score three runs against Hutt Valley Dodgers in a tie-breaker and beat them was a huge confidence booster for the boys. It was only three weeks ago that Hutt Valley Dodgers won the North Island Classic in Hastings," team manager Craig Waterhouse said.