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Emma Buckley and Ariana Nuska star for WA teams in inaugural Barclay Cup

Alexander ScottPilbara News
Ariana Nuska, 14, and Emma Buckley, 13, competed at the Barclay Cup
Camera IconAriana Nuska, 14, and Emma Buckley, 13, competed at the Barclay Cup Credit: Supplied/Kate Nuska

Two local female baseball stars have showcased the talent on offer in the Pilbara after competing in the Barclay Cup as part of the WA state team.

The inaugural Barclay Cup is a female only competition for junior baseballers aged between 13 to 16-years-old and was held from September 25-October 1 at the Surfers Paradise Baseball Club on the Gold Coast.

The junior tournament was created to honour the memory of Jacinda Barclay, who sadly passed away in 2020, and to promote women’s baseball in Australia.

Emma Buckley, 13, and Ariana Nuska, 14, were selected to take part in the competition, with Buckley playing on WA Gold Rays and Nuska on WA Blue Rays.

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The Gold Rays went undefeated to bring home the inaugural Barclay Cup while the Blue Rays pushed through challenging games to pick up exciting victories.

Buckley had the most on base average for her team and Nuska showcased her pitching skills with 46 strikes from 68 pitches thrown and only one walk.

Buckley said the final was a quick game, with the side winning 16-1.

“It was raining quite a bit and it ended up being 16-1 by the third inning so we called the mercy rule to stop the game,” she said.

Meanwhile, Nuska said it was great to have Pilbara girls make the side.

“It was really good because all those girls were just from Perth, and they all knew each other,” she said.

“Emma and I, we just trained alone up in the Pilbara... So it was good to have people from other places.”

Nuska who’s dream is to play college baseball said these competitions were important to bring awareness to women’s baseball

She said currently there was no collegiate program for baseball so she would be forced to play college softball instead.

Nuska’s mother Kate trained the kids for the competition and said the experience boosted the girls hunger for the sport.

She said the girls had mainly trained with boys and men’s teams in Hedland.

“That’s what brings in the drive for them too, because they’re like ‘yeah i’m a girl but I can play just as well, if not better than you’. I think that drive is what keeps these girls going,” she said.

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