Thornton ton gives Grove hope

Mick Thornton celebrates his century against Armstrong Creek. (Ivan Kemp) 382321_22

Ocean Grove all-rounder Mick Thornton blasted a stunning century against Armstrong Creek to keep his side’s finals hopes alive on day one of BPCA A1 Grade round 11 on Saturday.

Coming in at number six, Thornton made 117 from 144 deliveries and belted 11 boundaries and eight sixes at Armstrong Creek East Sports Precinct.

Ocean Grove was all out for 215 with Paul Jubber (26) and Dylan Thorley (10) helping Thornton get the final total to something that the bowlers can defend.

“I got a couple in the zone that I saw and liked and got a couple away,” Thornton said modestly.

“Jubs (Jubber) hung around with me for a while and I think it was a partnership of 70 or something like that with Dyl (Thorley). We were in a bit of strife so that allowed me to throw my arms a little bit and the runs ticking over.”

Despite the apparent ease of Thornton’s innings, he said the Titans’ bowlers were good.

“They didn’t bowl many bad balls,” he said.

“The odd one dropped short and sat up for me every now and then so I just had to wait and bide my time for those. They set pretty good fields as well.”

Some gloss was taken off the day’s play for the Grubbers when Armstrong Creek made it to 37 without loss at stumps with openers Clay Mulgrew and Chris Marsiglio at the crease.

“We weren’t really happy with it, but we’ve got next week and we’re still about 180 in front, so hopefully we can take a couple early ones next week,” Thornton said.

Thornton wasn’t thrown the ball, but will be pivotal on day two with his consistent seamers. Captain Dan Roddis elected to open the bowling with leg-spinner Alex Mann.

“My calves were cramping up while I was batting and I think Dan wanted to try something different with their openers,” he said.

“They both like pace on the ball so we were just trying to keep it nice and tight, pretty similar to what they did and try not to bowl too many loose balls.”

Spin duo Robbie Rutley and Tom Kent bowled Ocean Grove’s B1 Grade team to a winning position. Rutley took 5/50 from 23 overs while Kent took 3/54 from 19 as Armstrong Creek made 162 all out. In reply, the Grubbers made it to stumps unscathed at 0/20.

C Grade skipper Greg Scarpa made 92 in his side’s total of 9/248 against Queenscliff. Scarpa has made 420 runs this season and hit 12 boundaries during his 111-ball knock.

Darren Craig made a superb 107 in D Grade with Ocean Grove making 7/186 against Collendina, however the Cobras chased down the total relatively easily.