The Hunter Valley under-16s defeated Tamworth by 86 runs in the final to go through the Stan Austin Carnival in Taree undefeated.
Tenambit Morpeth Bulls junior Hunter Ball was the star of the tournament with the bat clubbing 118 against Pennant Hills and 186 all up at an averaging of 62.
Ball made an important 30 before he became one of three run out victims in the grand final against Tamworth.
Hunter Valley posted 6/150 from their 40 overs with Ball’s Bulls’ teammate Reilly Bashford making 42, City United’s Dusty Callaghan 30 and Raymond Terrace’s Andrew Ackerman 24 before he was run out as well.
Eddie Sutherland claimed 4-12 to rout the Tamworth batting line-up after Terrace’s Alex Lidbury (2-21) and Northern Suburbs’ Sidney Searle (2-16) made the initial breakthroughs.
Tamworth were all out 92 as Hunter Valley completed their campaign undefeated.
There were some outstanding performances over the tournament with Lidbury claiming 5-17 against West Pennant Hills and nine wickets for the tournament.
Searle also claimed nine wickets for the tournament including a best of 4-10 against Manly Warringah.
Sutherland and Callaghan picked up seven and six wickets respectively.
While Ball was the stand out, there were plenty of fine performances with the bat with Bashford and Farthing both finishing with 107 runs for the tournament at an average of 26.75.
The Hunter Valley under-12 team bowed out of the title race losing the semi-final of the Lismore Under-12 Carnival by 127 runs to Penrith.
Penrith made 8/199 from their 45 overs and dismissed the Hunter Valley side, which featured nine Maitland players, for 72. Hayden Lucas, from Northern Suburbs, and Singleton junior Keanu Botha were equal top scores with 16.
Raymond Terrace’s Oska Greentree and Norths’ Will Parkinson both took 2-34 in the final.
Other Maitland players in the team were Norths trio Jett Saxby, Harrison Dunn and Samuel Holz, Greford’s Toby Smith, Tenambit Morpeth’s Murray Woodfield and Karuah’s Thomas Long.
Hunter Valley had three wins from their four pool games only losing to Parramatta.
Among the outstanding individual performances were not out innings of 30 by Toby Smith, 28 by Lucas and Woodfield and 23 by Parkinson. Lucas was the leading run scorer with 81 at an average of 20.25.
Greentree was the leading wicket taker with five wickets, including best figures of 2-7 against Parramatta. Holz and Smith both claimed four wickets.
Holz took 3-11 against Hawkesbury and Smith claimed 2-22 against Parramatta.
The Hunter Valley Under-13s missed out on a spot in the major final with a thrilling three-wicket lost to North Shore in the semi-final of the Ballina Under-13 cricket carnival.
Hunter Valley made 9/156 with Eastern Suburbs’ Harry Scowen top scoring with 38, Dungog youngster Isaac Edwards making 34 and Raymond Terrace opener Jaxon Brooks 16.
Brooks backed up with 1-12 and Northern Suburbs bowler Jack Ryan took 2-13, however Hunter Valley was unable to restrict North Shore’s chase below the target.
They made 7/157 reaching their target in 48.2 overs. Incredibly there were three run outs with Ryan having a hand in one.
Other Maitland players in the Hunter Valley team included Norths’ Izaac Coyle and Easts’ Thomas Thorpe. Piranahas bowler Kaiden Howson took six wickets including best figures of 4-16.
Edwards made 123 runs at an average of 40.33 for the tournament and a top score of 52 not out retired. Brooks was almost as prolific making 103 at 34.33 with a top score of 50 not out retired.