Tahli chasing Moore after dream debut
1 February 2019
SOFTBALL: Tahli Moore has capped off a dream Aussie Spirit debut, scoring the winning run in an eight inning thriller over New Zealand in the 2019 Asia Pacific Cup.
The hometown team recorded their first win of the tournament in their first game against the rivals from across the ditch in what was a tight affair.
Verity Long-Droppert put the Australians on the board in the bottom of the 2nd inning converting a brilliant triple over left field.
New Zealand drew level in the top of the 6th following a booming home-run from Lara Andrews, setting up a tense 7th inning.
Scores remained level after the 7th and with Kaia Parnaby keeping New Zealand off the scoreboard following the top of the 8th, the speedy Moore took her place on second base to attempt to break the deadlock.
After reaching third off a Rachel Lack bunt, Moore raced home from a wayward pitch to seal the result for the Travelodge Aussie Spirit 2-1.
“That was the coolest thing, I didn’t expect to start the game either so to be out there starting the game and have my family up here, I’m pretty sure they were loudest here, it was really exciting.
“I didn’t think I’d be doing that on my debut, or be in this uniform at all.”
After her first taste of international softball at the elite level, Moore said she was excited rather than daunted by her milestone.
“I’ve never played New Zealand in the seniors before so it was really exciting to see the level, we’ve just come out of our national championship so I’ve seen that type of pitching before and that made me pretty comfortable,” added Moore, who was part of the undefeated New South Wales Firestars Gilley’s Shield team earlier this year.
“Everyone in the dugout was great, it gave me a lot of confidence for sure.”
Her debut at the Asia Pacific Cup acted as an important foundation for Moore, with the Asia Oceania 2020 Olympic softball Qualifier coming up in September at Shanghai.
"To play in the qualifier would be amazing, everyone is going to be fighting, it's do or die, only one team goes through and the winner takes it all," she said.
"All our dreams are to go to the Olympics, so this is the pinnacle."
The Travelodge Aussie Spirit took on Italy for their second game and were able to wrap up a convincing 8-0 win in five innings.
Parnaby kept the Italians in check allowing just two hits amongst her seven strikeouts for the game.
Leah Parry crossed home plate twice with Stacey Porter, Clare Warwick, Jess Torpey, Shannon Keevers and Long-Droppert adding to the total.
On diamond two, the Australia A side went down to Chinese Taipei 8-1, Jade Wall the sole run scorer for the Aussies.
Day two of the Asia Pacific Cup gets underway at 11:00am when Australia A take on Japan.