Round 17 kicked off Monday night with the Broadford Vikings hosting the Royal Rascals at the Broadford Hotel.
The last time these two teams met the Rascals gave the highly fancied Vikings an almighty scare, pushing them all the way with the Vikings’ escaping with a 6-5 win.
With the home team’s captain expressing nervousness after their last stoush, they weren’t going to take the Rascals lightly and came with their game faces on, highlighted by boom recruit Mark Robinson spearing in his first 180 in the SDDA.
The final result was a landslide 11-0 victory in favour of the Vikings, dropping just a solitary leg for the night.
Brendan Rogers scored a 117 and 132 for the Rascals, as well as snatching their only leg for the night. John Crockett was the only other triple figure scorer for the visitors, he managed a 105.
The Vikings welcomed back Peter Myles after a couple of weeks off; he finished the night with a modest three tons and a 125 as well as high pegs of 60 and 80.
Captain Mark Jones keeps his nose ahead in the ‘Most Tons’ race, scoring two tons, 121, 140 to go with a round-high peg of 93. Mark Ruddick slammed in a ton and Mark Robinson threw his maximum as well as 121 and 135.
Game two of the round saw two of our top four go head to head in a possible finals preview, with the Golf Club Aces hosting the POW 26ers at the Broadford Golf Club.
Both teams brought their A-games with an impressive 30 tons thrown between them and the games going down to the wire, with five of the eight singles matches going to a third leg decider.
The 26ers shot out of the blocks and got away to a 3-1 lead before the top-of-the-table Aces clawed them back in the singles matches, proving to be too strong in the end, taking home the chocolates with a hard fought 6-5 victory that will almost surely see the Aces finish the minor rounds on top of the ladder.
The Aces’ Dan Raynor continues to dominate his opponents with unbelievable darts, narrowly missing a high peg of 161, but still managed to nail four tons, 136 and high peg of 56.
Emily Wills strutted her stuff, throwing two tons, 120 and her first 180 for the year. Frank Roberts slammed in two tons, 120 and a high peg of 60 and Dave Ring finished the night with two tons.
The highlights for the 26ers included two tons for reigning singles tournament champion, Ben MacPherson; Ayden Ballantyne chipped in with 101 and 120; Shannon Jackson was in fine form and finished with two tons, 110 and 140.
The 26ers’ captain Steve Ash had a night out on the oche, as he tried to drag his team to victory, smashing out three tons, 105, 121, 125 and 140 in a terrific individual performance.
Third game of the round was another nail biter between two evenly matched teams, with the POW Misfits toeing the line against their co-tenant, the POW Kings.
Both teams were neck and neck all night with the result coming down to the final game of the night. Misfits’ Geoff Maggs proved to be the hero, standing up when it mattered most, throwing two tons, 121, 140 plus a high peg of 50 in the final game alone to deliver a hard fought 6-5 victory.
Brian Forge lent him great support, lobbing in a ton, 122 and the game high peg of 80.
Misfits’ captain Michelle Halfpenny had a quiet night but chipped in with 134.
The Kings’ highlights included a ton to Jarrod Duggan, two tons and 101 to Jeff Rhue, 120 and 140 to Shane Rhue. Captain Terran Crispin threw five tons, 125, 132 and 140 to round out the highlights in another cracking match-up.
Fourth game of the round saw the two bottom placed teams line up against one another, the winless POW Rebels throwing down the gauntlet against a new look Renegades team.
After a delayed start to proceedings the Rebels got off to the perfect start, winning all three teams games to put the visitors on the back foot early.
Renegades’ captain Tammy Kilroy got her team on the board in the first singles of the night, setting the ship back on course as the ‘Gades won four of the first five singles games.
Both teams went blow for blow and with the scores all square with one game to play, it all came down to the Rebels’ captain Trish Stuart and the Renegades’ Jess Louise to decide the outcome. With the time creeping closer to midnight, both teams grew weary, but Trish Stuart managed to dig deep and deliver her team their first victory of the season, sending the ‘Gades packing with a 6-5 win.
The highlights for the Rebels, other than their first four points for the year, were 115 for Trish Stuart and Geoff Dixon scored a single ton.
For the visitors, Tammy Kilroy narrowly missed a 144 peg, finishing instead with 132; Jess Louise chipped in with a ton; Scott Oakley had a quiet night to finish with a ton and 140; and Rod Cameron nailed 105, 120 and 136 to wrap up another close game for round 17.
The final game of the round pitted The Lions against the Bottom Pub Pirates at the Royal Hotel, and with the Pirates going in undermanned, it was going to be a long night, with the final score being 11-0 in the Lions’ favour.
Gary Power dominated the treble 20, finishing with eight tons, 105, two 125s, 140 plus two high pegs of 86, and setting the tone for the rest of his team.
Rob Walden followed Gary’s lead by slamming in three tons as well as 105 and 120.
Adam Lynch put a hold on his love affair with the triple five long enough to score a ton, as well as a high peg of 60.
The Pirates’ struggled to make any sort of impact on the game, but captain Dan Kilroy scored four tons, Drew Grantham chucked three tons and the Pirates’ debutant, Ben Eaton, nailed the team’s highest peg of 53 in an impressive introduction to competition darts.
With only one round remaining before finals, there won’t be a lot of changes to ladder positions, but one match that has the potential to shape a team’s finals campaign is the game between second placed Lions and third placed Vikings. With the winner locking in a top two finish and securing the second chance, this match-up looms as season defining.
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