AKRON, Ohio - They had to play eight innings, but the Racers (11-9) eventually came from behind once again for the victory. After
Racers’ ace Angela Tincher shut down the middle of Philadelphia’s (14-6) order in the top of the eighth inning, the Racers’ offense came to life. Catcher Kristen Butler led off the inning with a double past Force leftfielder, Savannah Long, as she dove to try and catch the ball, but was unsuccessful. After Susan Ogden sacrificed pinch runner Jherrica Williams to third, Kate Robinson came up with her second RBI on the night with a sacrifice fly ball to right field.
Tincher made her only mistakes in the third inning when she gave up a double to Kellie Wilkerson and a homerun to Chelsea Spencer on back to back at bats. That stretched the lead to 2-0, but that would be all that the Racers would allow.
The Racers’ offense answered right back in the bottom of the third when Kellie Middleton singled and stole second. She then moved to third when Captain Kristen Butler singled and Middleton later scored on a sacrifice fly by Susan Ogden.
Both teams then went scoreless for the next three innings until, Hawaii product, Kate Robinson came up in the bottom of the sixth and blasted a homerun over the left-centerfield wall with one out to tie the game 2-2.
Tincher then had to rely on some spectacular plays from the defense to hold the score. The first web gem went to left fielder Kellie
Middleton who dove for a ball in the sixth and made an outstanding catch. Kim Hamilton followed her in the eighth by making almost the same play in centerfield.
Between her defense backing her up and Tincher’s ability to control the Force hitters, the first round selection was able to throw a
complete game allowing only two runs on seven hits with seven strikeouts. Tincher used 115 pitches in the eight inning performance.
Katie Burkhart, the first selection overall in the 2008 NPF draft, made her third appearance of the series and picked up her second
loss. Burkhart went the complete game allowing three runs on five hits and three walks in 7.2 innings.
The Racers will be home next Wednesday through Saturday to take on the New England Riptide in a four game series. All four games will start at 7:05 and tickets can be purchased from the Akron Racers ticket office by calling 330-376-8188.