Akron, Ohio - After the first game of the series, Akron thought their offense was geared up for the rest of the season. They brought two straight victories into Thursday night’s contest at Firestone Stadium that featured the Netherlands National Team.
Things weren’t that simple though. After starting the game by leaving six runners on base in the first three innings, the Racers (4-6) finally broke through to win the game 10-6. The Racers poured on a dramatic comeback, scoring 10 unanswered runs with back to back five run innings in the fifth and sixth.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Racer first baseman Kate Robinson broke the silence by the Racer offense with a three-run home run off of Kristi de Vries to reduce the deficit to 6-3. It was Robinson’s second home run in as many days, and brought in India Chiles, who reached on an infield single, and Kellie Middleton who reached on an error by Noemi Boekel. Two batters later, Susan Ogden smashed a home run for the second night in a row over the left field wall to make the score 6-4. Jessica Toochek followed with a solo shot, the first of her career, to make it 6-5.
Singles by pinch-hitter Shannon Doepking and Norelle Dickson started off the bottom of the sixth inning. Chiles then walked to load the bases. Middleton then tied the game up at 6 with a base hit that scored Doepking. Robinson (2-4) knocked in two more to give the Racers their first lead of the game, 8-6. The two RBI’s brought Robinson’s total to 5 on the night. A sacrifice bunt by Kristen Butler and a single by Toochek brought in two more runs for Akron.
Angela Tincher (3-1) got her third win of the season and second in as many nights, throwing the final 1.1 innings without giving up a hit and recording 3 strikeouts.
The Dutch National Team took a 2-0 lead on a homerun by Marloes Fellinger in the third inning off of Racers starter Jamee Juarez. The Racer hurler threw well, giving up 2 runs on four hits and striking out 5 in four innings.
In the top of the fifth inning, Debby Connor led off with a solo home run for the Dutch to make the score 3-0. After an errant throw by Kristen Butler sailed wide of first base, Saskia Kosterink was on board first base. After a popout to Robinson by Fellinger, Nathalie Timmermans got on base following a Toochek error. Jolanda Kroesen then knocked in both runners with a three-run homer to make the score 6-0.
The two teams will square off again Friday and Saturday at Firestone Stadium to close out the series. Tickets can be purchased at the Racers ticket office.