—The Racers climbed back above .500 in non-conventional fashion on Friday night as they defeated the league leading Philadelphia Force 5-4. The win in the nightcap earned them a split for the July 4th double header.
The Force (14-5) had the lead for virtually the whole game as they roughed up Racer starter Jamee Jaurez in the first inning with three runs. After getting through the first frame, Jaurez was nearly perfect during the rest of the game. Her one mistake was made to Kellie Wilkerson who hit the ball out of the park to give her three RBI’s on the night.
The most significant offense the Racers (10-9) received on Friday came from “Garlic Girl” Veronica Wootson who hit one out of the park during the bottom of the second inning. Wootson had the ball timed all night long and sent a few others over the fence but foul later in the contest.
Although the Racers amassed less hits than the Force, they were able to pull ahead due to an unusual string of walks and hit batsmen during the fifth inning. During that inning, two batters were hit and three others walked. The ability for Akron’s hitters to be patient at the plate enabled them to tie the game 4-4 during the fifth inning.
Outfielder Kellie Middleton started the bottom of the sixth by being the last victim plunked by Force pitching. When the Force’s manager, Jennifer Teague, came out to argue the call, she was thrown from the game and Middleton remained on first. Middleton was then sacrificed to second by leadoff hitter Norrelle Dickson and reached third when India Chiles singled to the shortstop. Middleton then put on a sprinting display and due to a perfect slide was safe at home when Oklahoma
product Susan Ogden popped a foul ball to shallow left that was caught on the dive by shortstop Chelsea Spencer.
Rookie ace, Angela Tincher, toed the rubber for the Racers during the last two innings and recorded four strikeouts while she earned the win.
The number one draft pick overall, Katie Burkhart, started the game for the Force and made just one mistake to Wootson in the second before being pulled in the fifth before the walk extravaganza started.
The two teams will take the field for the last game of the series on July 5 at 7:05 pm for Breast Cancer Awareness Night. The game also marks the Racers fourth appearance on FSN’s NPF Game of the Week.
For ticket information, contact the Racers’ ticket office at 330-376-8188 or by visiting the Racers on the web at www.akronracers.org.