Rosemont, Ill. (July 6, 2019) – The Chicago Bandits (19-3) won both games of a double header against the Cleveland Comets (9-17) on Saturday.
Game 1: In a low scoring affair, the Bandits defeated the Comets 3-1 for the first game of the double header.
The Bandits were able to capitalize on some mistakes by the Comets to jump out to an early lead. With two outs in the first inning, the Comets committed two consecutive errors to allow Hannah Flippen and Abbey Cheek to get on base. On the second error, Flippen managed to score from second base.
The Bandits continued to pad their lead in the second inning. Gwen Svekis started it off with a double which was quickly followed up by a Courtney Gano walk. After an Abby Ramirez sacrifice bunt put both runners in scoring position, Brenna Moss hit a single to score Svekis and Gano.
“I wasn’t really seeing [Shelby McCombs] very well when I was slapping so I decided to scoot up in the box and just hit away,” said Moss. “She wasn’t throwing me many drop balls so I ended up getting one that was the perfect height and I was able to drive it.”
Down 3-0, the Comets responded in the very next inning. Sammy Marshall got on base with a single and advanced to second base on a Chelsea Gonzales sacrifice bunt. Lilli Piper hit a single to score Marshall and reduced the Bandits advantage to two runs.
The score remained the same for the rest of the game as the Bandits pitching held strong. Starting pitcher Savannah Heebner had a solid outing with 5.1 innings and four strikeouts while only giving up four hits.
Haylie Wagner came in for the five out save in the sixth inning with Carly Thomas on first and Marshall at third. Jade Rhodes hit a ground ball to Bandits shortstop Flippen who quickly flipped the ball to third baseman Cheek. Unable to get back to third, Marshall was caught in a rundown and got tagged out at home plate. After getting out of the inning with no runs allowed, Wagner faced only three batters to secure the win for the Bandits.
Game 2: The Bandits came from behind late to steal a 3-2 victory over the Comets in the second game of the double header.
The beginning of the game started off as a pitcher’s duel between starters Randi Rupp and Kelly Barnhill. Through the first three innings, both pitchers combined to only give up one baserunner.
Things began to change in the 4th inning when the Comets scored the first run of the game on an Emily Carosone RBI single. In the next inning, the Comets proceeded to load the bases with no outs. Rachele Fico came in to relieve Barnhill in an attempt to limit the damage. Despite giving up a run on a bunt by Gonzales, she was able to keep the game in striking distance with only a two run deficit.
The Bandits finally came alive offensively in the bottom of the sixth inning with Sierra Hyland pitching for the Comets. Jessie Scroggins started it off by reaching base on a drop third strike. After an Amanda Chidester single, Svekis came up to the plate with one out and two runners on base. Svekis proceeded to hit her fourth home run of the season with a three-run blast to right field that gave the Bandits the lead.
“Yesterday I hit a bomb off of Hyland on a down and in pitch so I knew she probably wasn’t going to go there for me,” said Svekis. “She throws pretty hard and she’s pretty good around the zone so I was just focusing on getting my pitch on the outside part of the plate.”
Fico held the lead in the seventh inning to secure the victory for the Bandits. The Bandits are now in sole possession of first place in National Pro Fastpitch.
The Bandits will look to add a 14th game to their winning streak when they go on the road to play the first of a five game series versus the Aussie Peppers on Monday, July 8 7:00 C.T.
ABOUT CHICAGO BANDITS
Since 2005, the Chicago Bandits have been members of the National Pro Fastpitch league. Entering their 14th season as a franchise, the Bandits have provided the Chicago area with high-level softball talent and entertainment en route to capturing six regular season titles and four Cowles Cup championships, the most recent coming during the 2016 campaign. Located in Rosemont, the Bandits play at Parkway Bank Sports Complex, one of the premier softball facilities in the nation. Parkway Bank Sports Complex is the only stadium in the country built exclusively for a women’s professional softball team. The Bandits provide an opportunity for female fastpitch softball players to further their careers at the professional level and has included legendary figures such as Jennie Finch, Tammy Williams and Stacy May-Johnson
About National Pro Fastpitch (NPF)
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2004, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in fastpitch softball beyond their collegiate and amateur success. The NPF affiliate teams consist of the Aussie Peppers of Minnesota, Beijing Shougang Eagles, Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois, Chicago Bandits, Cleveland Comets, and USSSA Pride. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the United States, Australia, Canada, China, and Mexico, and represent the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.