photo by Dina Kwit
ROSEMONT, Ill. -- In the first Battle of the Sexes game to ever be played in a softball stadium, the Chicago Bandits of National Pro Fastpitch, and the Will County CrackerJacks of the Midwest Collegiate League battled it out in the ultimate test of softball and baseball proportions.
Both teams started out strong through the first part of the game, with Jamee Juarez surrendering just two hits through her three innings of pitching. With the CrackerJacks receiving their pitching help from Mark Brown, uncle of Bandits head coach Darrick Brown, the Bandits got on the board in the second inning.
With Dorian Shaw on base after recording her first professional career hit in the NPF, a Kristen Shifflett single scored Shaw to give the Bandits a 1-0 lead over the CrackerJacks.
“It felt great to get my first professional hit tonight,” said Shaw. “It was such a great atmosphere out there and we worked really hard as a team so it was nice to be able to contribute to the win.”
A double by Thompson later in the inning gave the Bandits a 3-0 lead heading into the third inning.
Going into the fourth, the Bandits made a pitching change sending Taryne Mowatt out to the circle. Walking three of the first four batters she faced, the CrackerJacks capitalized on a Bandits error to get on the board, 3-2. Mowatt settled down and was able to strike out the next three batters to end the inning.
Nikki Nemitz took her turn pitching during the sixth and seventh innings striking out a total of six CrackerJacks players. In the bottom of the sixth a Knauer single scored Galindo and Jager to put the Bandits ahead 6-2. Nemitz struck out the final three batters of the game to seal the win for the Bandits.
“This was an awesome game to play in,” said Shaw. “My first experience with the Battle of the Sexes was a great one. I can see this being a great draw for the fans and I look forward to playing against the boys again.”
On whether there was much difference between playing the boys or girls Shaw said “I noticed how fast the guys really are, but I think we showed them how hard our job is out there.”
With this win tonight, the Bandits improve their Battle of the Sexes record to 3-1
The Bandits take on the USSSA Pride this weekend. Be sure to catch the game on Saturday, June 11, when it airs on ESPN2 at 2 p.m.
All tickets for 2011 Chicago Bandits games, including the home opening series against the USSSA Pride, June 16-19 games are on sale now. Visit www.chicagobandits.com or call 877-722-6348 for more information. Early ordering is encouraged to avoid lines at the box office windows!