Matt McCann threw seven strong innings and Ben Garvey had a game-clinching hit as Illawarra baseball leaders Dapto Chiefs beat Kiama Braves 9-4 in Saturday's round-16 clash at Hector Harvey Park.
McCann struck out five batters and gave up only four runs on nine hits in a solid outing.
The Chiefs led 3-0 after three innings but Kiama struck back with Scott Tabrett's hit in the top of the third leading to three runs to tie the game.
Chiefs scored a run in the bottom of the fifth to regain the lead 4-3 and went 6-3 ahead with two runs in the sixth.
But a Kiama run in the seventh had the visitors back in the contest before Garvey's loaded-bases three-run single in the eighth sealed victory for Chiefs.
Ash Miller went 3/4 with 2RBIs for Chiefs, while Tabrett was 2/3 with 3RBIs.
McCann won the pitching dual with Braves starter Luke Brown, who gave up four earned runs on six hits, with six walks in five inning.
Chiefs consolidated top spot with the victory, while Braves lost ground in their battle with Berkeley for fourth spot after Eagles thrashed Shoalhaven Mariners 12-1 at Nowra's Ison Park.
Eagles out-hit Mariners 13-3, with Chad Blanch continuing his excellent season with 4/5 and 2RBIs.
Aaron Sloan went 2/4 with 2RBIs for Eagles, while Gabe Tate (1/2) was best for Mariners.
A fired-up Wests Cardinals put their shock loss to Mariners in round 15 behind them with a thumping 11-1 win over Northern Pirates at Cringila Park.
The second-placed Cardinals led 8-0 after just three innings with Pirates' only run coming in the seventh.
In Saturday's round 17, Eagles host Pirates, Mariners are at home to Braves and Cardinals will host Chiefs in a top two battle.