KISSIMMEE, FL – July 30, 2013 - It was an excellent night of softball at Osceola County Stadium Tuesday night as the Chicago Bandits and USSSA Pride split a double header. Chicago’s offense gave them the 6-1 win in game one, while the Pride took game two in an exciting 11-inning 4-3 win.
Bandits: 6, Pride 1
The Bandits took control of the game from the very start when Megan Wiggins hit a first-pitch homerun off the Pride’s Sarah Pauly (7-4), who took the mound against Chicago’s Monica Abbott (13-2). Chicago’s bats remained explosive throughout the rest of the game, scoring five more runs on nine more hits from Nerissa Myers, Alisa Goler, Tammy Williams, Amber Patton, Kimi Pohlman and Danielle Zymkowitz, including homeruns from Myers and Goler in the third and sixth innings, respectively.
Abbott threw a complete seven-inning game, striking out eight Pride batters. Pauly didn’t fair as well; she allowed all six of Chicago’s runs on 10 hits, through she did strike out two Bandits. Blaire Luna came in in relief in the sixth, retiring six straight batters in her seventh NPF appearance.
USSSA’s only run of the game came on a solo homerun from Kristyn Sandberg in the second inning. Natasha Watley, Ashley Charters, GiOnna DiSalvatore and Francesca Enea all recorded hits, but were left on base.
Chicago’s Game 1 win brought them back to a 2.5-game lead in the NPF standings.
Pride: 4, Bandits 3
USSSA’s Jordan Taylor faced off against Chicago’s Andi Williamson in game two. The first runs of the ballgame came from a two-run homer from Megan Wiggins in the third inning, but the Pride quickly answered back when Kristyn Sandberg and GiOnna DiSalvatore scored on a hit from Andrea Duran in the fourth.
Williamson gave up two runs on five hits and struck out two Pride hitters before Chicago head coach Mike Steuerwald brought in Michelle Gascoigue, who pitched 2.1 innings without allowing a hit. Gascoigue was the setup woman for Monica Abbott, who came in in the bottom of the sixth after pitching the entire first game of the double header.
Cat Osterman took over for Taylor, who finished the night with four strikeouts, at the start of the fifth inning. Megan Wiggins scored on a double from Nerissa Myers, giving the Bandits a 3-2 lead. A solo homerun in the seventh inning from Lauren Lappin tied it up 3-3, sending the game into extra innings.
After a scoreless ninth inning, the International Tiebreaker rule was put into affect; each team would start off the inning with a runner on second base. In the bottom of the eleventh, Sandberg moved Kelly Kretschman to third on a sacrifice bunt, and then DiSalvatore sent a chopper to Bandits shortstop Tammy Williams that allowed Kretschman to cross the plate and win it for the Pride.
Next, the Pride take on the Racers in Akron for a four-game series starting Friday, Aug. 2 at 7:05 p.m.
Boxscore – Game 1 – http://npf.bbstats.pointstreak.com/boxscore.html?gameid=142147
Boxscore – Game 2 - http://npf.bbstats.pointstreak.com/boxscore.html?gameid=142148
About USSSA Florida Pride:
The USSSA Florida Pride is a professional franchise in the National Pro Fastpitch League that is owned and operated by USSSA. The amateur organization of USSSA has multi-sport coverage and encompasses teams and players from the United States and abroad.
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fastpitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL). NPF is the Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women’s fastpitch softball since 2002.
The United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), headquartered in Osceola County, Florida, USSSA is the World’s Largest Multi-sport Athletic Organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com. Also be sure to visit USSSAToday.com for the latest USSSA News!