A poor batting display has condemned the Batemans Bay Cricket Club to its ninth loss of the season, dropping a first-innings decision to Berry-Shoalhaven Heads at Hanging Rock Oval.
Playing without captain Scott Fagerlund, the Bay resumed its first innings on 1/11 after the late wicket of Liam Macpherson on day one.
Sam Lee and Carl Lang started well with the bat, as both men built their scores into the 20s. However, Lee’s wicket for 25 would start a game-defining collapse for the home side.
Zac Henstock followed Lee’s wicket for just five runs, and when Anthony Mortimer fell to the bowling of Chris McCarron for eight, the Bay were left struggling at 4/63.
Young wicket-keeper Ryan Hall joined Lang at the crease, and the two looked to build an important partnership for the home side.
The pair would add 24-runs for the fifth wicket, broken when Glenn Brandon took the wicket of Lang for 23.
The visitors would take a steady stream of wickets from that point forward, including two each to Brandon and Daniel Troy, to bowl the home side out for just 126.
Ryan Hall was the top scorer for the Bay with 30 not out, while Lee and Lang were the only other batsmen in double figures.
Brandon was the pick of the bowlers for Berry-Shoalhaven Heads (3/29), while McCarron and Troy also took multiple wickets.
Berry-Shoalhaven Heads sent the home side in for the follow-on, hoping to pick up a miracle outright victory with less than 10 overs remaining.
Ryan Hall and Liam Macpherson would end that slim hope with an opening partnership of 29, and despite the quick wickets of Hall and Henstock, the visitors had to settle for a first-innings victory.
The win sees Berry-Shoalhaven Heads tighten its grip on fourth spot, as they are now 35 points clear of North Nowra Cambewarra.
They will host Bay & Basin next weekend with a chance to jump into second position if results go their way.
Batemans Bay remain anchored to the foot of the ladder after its loss, 21 points adrift of Ulladulla United. They have their second bye next round, before hosting Bomaderry to end the season.