School Sports

Dominant Catholic High School in easy victory

Catholic High School's Aloysius Ong (right) pitches in the Schools National Boys' softball C Division final against St Gabriel's Secondary. Catholic High won 9-3 to take the title for the first time since 2009.
Catholic High School's Aloysius Ong (right) pitches in the Schools National Boys' softball C Division final against St Gabriel's Secondary. Catholic High won 9-3 to take the title for the first time since 2009.ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

Over the last six years, Catholic High School's softball team have fallen at the final hurdle in the Schools National Boys' C Division championship half the time (2010, 2011 and last year).

Yesterday, they finally shed their bridesmaid status, beating St Gabriel's Secondary 9-3 to claim top spot - a position they last held in 2009.

"It's a big present we give to our school," declared captain and catcher Joshua Tan proudly, for their achievement coincides with the school's 80th anniversary celebrations this year.

Catholic High raced to a 9-0 lead entering the final inning, after home runs from Joshua, Xavier Lim, Aloysius Ong, Tristan Tan, Low Zu Ray and Daren Lim.

Their dominance demoralised first-time finalists St Gabriel's. So during the break before the final inning, St Gabriel's coach So Beng Seng played the song You Raise Me Up on a portable player to lift his team's spirits.

It worked briefly. They fought back, salvaging some pride by scoring three home runs through Anggath Bantawa, Ethan Wong and Mohammed Huzaifie.

Catholic High had entered the final as heavy favourites after coming back from 2-4 down to beat bitter rivals and defending champions Raffles Institution (RI) 7-6 in the semi-finals.

Referring to that confidence-boosting win, Aloysius said: "We knew RI were our strongest opponents, so beating them gave us the belief that we are good and we could win.

"We were so hungry to win the championship after our losses. We've always trained for this day."

St Gabriel's left the Kallang diamond with their heads high after surpassing their previous best of a semi-final finish last year.

And the team hope their performance this year will inspire and encourage their juniors to go one step further.

Said pitcher Muhamed Afi, who like most of his team-mates, will feature in the B Division next year: "When we got into the final, we had already made history for the school. Now that we are second-best, we hope that our juniors will break through."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 15, 2015, with the headline 'Dominant Catholic High School in easy victory'. Print Edition | Subscribe