ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Bandits entered tonight’s game looking to secure a 3-1 series victory over the Pride to open up the 2012 season.
In the circle for the Bandits was Meagan Denny-White in her first NPF start. The Pride also started a rookie pitcher in her NPF debut, Brittany Mack. Mack was the number one overall pick in the 2012 NPF draft.
Denny-White started off strong for the Bandits, keeping the Pride off base in the first inning and recorded one strikeout.
Mack also recorded a strikeout, against the first batter she faced, Amber Patton. The Bandits Megan Wiggins opened up the hitting in the game, hitting a double to center field. Alisa Goler followed up Wiggins with a double of her own which brought in Wiggins to give the Bandits a 1-0 lead.
Mack put up another strikeout to end the inning, but for the third time in the series, the Bandits came out of the first inning with at least one run.
The Pride answered in the second inning as Kristyn Sandberg hit a double deep to the wall allowing the Pride to bat in Kelly Kretschman from first to tie the game.
The Bandits came right back in the bottom of the inning with Danielle Zymkowitz and Amanda Williams getting on base. Patton then came up and brought home Zymkowitz for the 2-1 Bandits lead.
The Pride wouldn’t give up in the third as Kelsey Bruder hit a double to right field to put Jen Salling on third. Caitlin Lowe then stepped up to the plate and hit one that glanced off Tammy Williams’ glove allowing Salling to advance home to tie the game up again.
The Bandits bats were still hot in the third as Wiggins was knocked in by Goler’s second double of the game to give the Bandits a 3-2 edge. As the Pride tried to throw out Wiggins at home, Goler advanced to third and was then brought home as Kristen Butler floated a hit to left field for the 4-2 lead
In the fourth the Pride looked threatening with runners on first and second, but the Bandits were able to hold the Pride to keep the 4-2 lead.
Throughout the game, both teams continued to make spectacular defensive plays including Zymkowitz’s catch in left field which she threw home just in time for Butler to tag out the runner for the double play. Other great plays included the Pride’s Andrea Duran snagging a ball out of the air as it flew over her head down the third baseline which she turned to first for the double play and Wiggins’ catch which she jumped into the wall to make, robbing the Pride’s Bruder of a homerun.
In the end, the Bandits increased the lead to 5-2 and would win in Denny-White’s first NPF start. The Bandits won three out of the four games in the series against the Pride to open up the season.
The Bandits’ next game will be Thursday, June 14 against the Carolina Diamonds. The Bandits return home to Rosemont for a Tuesday, June 19 matchup against the Akron Racers.