Kissimmee, FL—August 10—The USSSA Pride continued to display their seemingly insurmountable power on Wednesday night against the Akron Racers. Facing the Racers at the University of Notre Dame, the Pride won their 36th game of the regular season.
In the first inning cleanup hitter Lauren Chamberlain hit a two-run home run, giving the Pride a two-run lead and setting the mood for the game. Fast forward to the second inning, Pride veteran Kelly Kretschman hit a two-run homer of her own to make the score 4-0. It stayed that way until the sixth inning.
Starting pitcher Chelsea Thomas seemed to be getting tired in the sixth. She walked AJ Andrews to start the inning and immediately gave up a home run to Taylor Schlopy on a 1-0 count after throwing a wild pitch for the first pitch of the at-bat. She got the next batter to ground out, but that would be it for Thomas. Jordan Taylor, the reliable closer, came in to finish the game. She got the next two batters out.
The Pride tacked on another run in the bottom of the sixth for good measure. Rookies Haylie McCleney and Kelsey Stewart put themselves on base—McCleney with a hit and Stewart with a hit-by-pitch—to lead off the inning. Courtney Ceo bunted them into scoring position, setting things up for a run or two. Keilani Ricketts got a rare opportunity to pinch-hit without entering the game defensively, and she took advantage. Ricketts sent a single into left field to bring in McCleney and round out the scoring.
Thomas had an outstanding outing, despite the home run. She threw 5.1 innings of one-hit softball, walking three and striking out two. Taylor did her usual work, throwing 1.2 innings with no hits and two strikeouts in five batters faced. She lowered her ERA to 0.80, second in the league only to Scrap Yard Dawgs ace Monica Abbott.
The Pride will play their final game of the regular season when they return to Akron on Friday, August 12 to once again face the Racers. First pitch is set for 7:00 PM (ET).
Akron Racers: 2
USSSA Pride: 5
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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.
About USSSA: 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.
About National Pro Fastpitch (NPF): National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2002, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in diamond sports beyond their collegiate success. The 2016 NPF season will be televised on CBS Sports Network. Coverage includes the NPF College Draft presented by Bownet on Thur., April 14, followed by 23 regular-season games, a Championship Series Preview Special and the 2016 NPF Championship Series. The NPF recently announced that the Scrap Yard Dawgs, located in The Woodlands, Texas, will join the Akron Racers, Chicago Bandits, Dallas Charge, Pennsylvania Rebellion and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2016 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the U.S., Australia, Canada, Japan, the Netherlands and New Zealand, representing the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball