ROUND ROCK, Texas-Game two in the five game series against the USSSA Pride (22-18) found the Chicago Bandits (27-15) looking for revenge in a disappointing 2-0 loss the night before.
It was a quick first few innings for Bandits pitcher Eileen Canney (2-4) and the Bandits, who came out swinging much harder this game. By the second inning, the Bandits were onto Pride pitcher Sarah Pauly (11-5) putting themselves on the score board with an RBI double off the bat of Bandits’ rookie Christine Knauer.
Later in the inning, costly base running errors by the speedy Knauer and center fielder Caitlin Lever limited the Bandits to just one run that inning as both were caught on a botched squeeze bunt attempt by Amber Patton.
The Bandits struck again in the bottom of the third when two RBI singles from Jennie Finch and Angela Findlay pushed runners across the plate.
A little help from a throwing error on the Pride’s center fielder Kelly Kretschman advanced Finch to third on a single up the middle, as Emily Friedman came around to score. Finch went on to score as well as the next batter, Angela Findlay, dropped a single just over the head of Pride shortstop Natasha Watley to give the Bandits a 3-0 lead.
Facing a zero on the scoreboard, Pride first baseman Tonya Callahan slapped a single to get on base in the top of the fourth. One batter later, Melissa Roth put runners in scoring position with a double, moving Callahan to third on the play. Solid defense by Chicago ended Florida’s scoring threat.
Another fielding error by the Pride in the bottom of the fourth allowed Bandits shortstop Knauer to score, giving the Bandits a 4-0 lead.
In the top of the fifth, the Pride finally reached the scoreboard when center fielder Kelly Kretschman sent a line-drive home run over the centerfield fence to close the gap to 5-1.
Bandits starter Eileen Canney held tight to the run support, getting one more run from her offense to earn the complete game, 5-1 victory. The victory is Canney’s second on the season. She managed three strikeouts and allowed six hits in the victory.
Tomorrow will have the Bandits and Pride facing off in a double header at 6:00 and 8:30 pm.
The second game will be a special Pink Out night for anyone coming to the ballpark in association with the American Cancer Society, so be sure to wear any pink you have to the ballpark. That includes you dads and brothers!
Bandit Tidbits – Tonight’s attendance was recorded at 3,127. Prior to tonight’s ballgame, Bandits pitcher Nikki Nemitz squared off with local radio personalities. Nemitz was victorious, allowing just one hit in four batters. Video of that challenge will be on the Bandits website shortly.
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!