Softball New Zealand

From Hawkes Bay Today, New Zealand:

SOFTBALL – Pitching for top spot


Jordan Waterhouse’s surname is the biggest clue … he was always going to feature on the national softball scene.

The Lindisfarne College year 11 pupil is the son of former Softball New Zealand board member Craig Waterhouse, one of the code’s top administrators and long-time organiser of two of the Bay’s biggest tournaments: the annual Fun in the Sun and the annual men’s Lion Red North Island Classic, which will be played at Akina Park, Hastings.

Waterhouse, 15, started playing teeball when he was five. But long before that he was “running errands” for his father and mother Diane as they ran various tournaments.

“Putting numbers on diamonds and other little jobs like that,” he recalled.

His days of being a gofer have ended. This weekend’s 10-team Classic will be his second on the Fast Pitch side’s playing roster.

Waterhouse is aiming to get more game time than he got last year when he appeared in one game as an outfielder. The pitcher for the Hawke’s Bay under-15s who finished second to Hutt Valley at their North Island tournament in Tauranga last summer doesn’t expect too much time on the mound.

“I might get some if we establish a big lead in a game … but any game time in any role will be welcomed,” said Waterhouse, who joins Hastings Boys’ High School’s Kane Herbert as the youngest players on the Fast Pitch roster.

He is one of three back-up pitchers to player-coach Rayner Te Wake who he spends an hour training with each day at his family’s Meeanee home, which is equipped with a batting machine and pitcher’s mats.

It’s all part of his long-term goals – to secure Junior Black Sox and Black Sox berths in the future. Waterhouse is also keen to have a stint in either the United States or Canada when he finishes school.

That’s in the future. His immediate goal is to help Fast Pitch improve on last summer’s efforts in the Classic which saw them win the plate.

“I would like to think we can have a crack at the top four in the championship section this time,” he said.

A centre in the Lindisfarne College E grade rugby team, Waterhouse tips Porirua United and Hutt City United as the teams to beat this weekend. Former Hawke’s Bay pitcher Regan Manley is Hutt City United’s top pitcher and defending champions Porirua United will again be spearheaded by former Bay star and former Black Sox outfielder Fabian Makea.

Other visiting teams are Hutt Valley Cardinals, Wairarapa Giants and Newlands. Along with Fast Pitch, Scarfe Builders Tamatea, Dodgers, Maraenui Pumas and Saints are the Bay’s hopes.

Waterhouse was quick to reply when asked who will have the gofer’s role this weekend. “It looks like its Lachie’s turn,” he said, referring to his 3-year-old nephew Lachlan.

Like his uncle, Lachlan took an early liking to the code and had a glove in his hand when he was just a week old.

SportToday won’t be surprised if he, like his uncle, is on the Fast Pitch playing roster when he’s 15. As we said … it’s all in the surname


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