NPF CHAMPIONSHIP SATURDAY
Saturday, August 25
(Games 5 is “If Necessary” games)
Game 5 (#1 “USSSA Pride” vs. #4 “Akron Racers”) 11:00 a.m.
Game 7 Championship Game Final 7:00 p.m.
Game 5 USSSA Pride vs Chicago Bandits
Sunday, August 26 “Pack the Park for ESPN”
Game 8 Championship Game Final (ESPN2/ESPN3) 2:30 p.m.
Game 9 “If Necessary” Championship Game Final 6:00 p.m.
(If Game 9 is played, admission is FREE and will air on ESPN2/ESPN3)
Format is three rounds of “best of 3” Series’. It begins with #1 Seed vs. #4 Seed and #2 Seed vs. #3 Seed. The Winners of those two Series’ will play each other in a “best of 3” Championship Final Series to determine the eventual Championship Series Champion. All Times are listed as Central Standard Time and will be viewable on Pointstreak. Championship Games 8 & 9 will be televised. Check your local listings.
Game 5 (#1 “USSSA Pride” vs. #4 “Akron Racers”)
Starters Cat Osterman (Pride) vs Kristina Thorson (Racers)
Top 1st: Racers drove Osterman out of circle with 5-run first inning. Osterman failed to hold lead Friday night and took the loss. Modglin struck out but Montalvo walked on 3-2 count. Marder jacked still another home run, Racers 2-0. Hesson singled; McDonald scored. Schlopy strikes out. Castillo slugs 2-run homer. Paculba singles. Sarah Pauly relieved Osterman. Trimboli strikes out.
Bottom 3rd: Pride gets back into game. Duran flied to right but Lappin and Watley singled. Lowe singled, loading the bases. Mendoza crushes grand slam, 5-4. Lisa Norris relieves Thorson.
Top 4th: Trimboli leads with a double. Modglin out. Montalvo singles, Modglin scores, 6-4. Bottom 4th: Willis flies to right. Duran out 5-3. Lappin singles. Watley doubles. Lowe singles in two runs, 6-6.
Top 5th: Racers break tie. McDonald strikes out. Nicole Pauly homers,7-6.
Top 6th: Paculba leads with walk, but is forced at 2nd by Trimboli. Modglin out. Montalvo singles. Marder lines out to pitcher Pauly. Bottom 6th: Pride scored 3 runs to take 9-7 lead. (PointStreak bollixed again; no play by play). Report from observer: Mendoza hit second homer of game, a 3-run shot. Mendoza now has 7 rbi.
Top 7th: After leading much of game, Racers now face elimination. Racers could no recover after Mendoza’s MVP turn.
Now, the NPF 2012 championship will be decided by a best of three between Chicago Bandits and USSSA Pride – the matchup many observers predicted at the start.
First game Saturday night 7pm.
Game 7 USSSA Pride vs Chicago Bandits
Bandits win 2-1.
Starting pitchers Cat Osterman (Pride) vs Monica Abbott Bandits
Both teams have won this championship in the past. The starting pitchers are former teammates on Team USA but are also long-time opponents in professional softball.
Bandits broke scoreless tie with 2 runs top 3rd. A. Williams led with a walk. Doepking jacks a 2-run home run. Pride are hitless through three innings, although Abbott has given up 4 walks. Bandits 2-0.
Goler, Butler and Patton down in order, top 4th. Bottom: Duran opened with single, first hit off Abbott, on 2-2 count. Morgan forces Duran, 5-4. Willis lines out to 2nd. Lappin forces Morgan, 6-4.
Top 5th: T. Williams put out, dropped third strike. A. Williams struck out swinging, Osterman’s fourth. Doepking singles. Zymkowitz struck out. Bottom: Watley out 3-4. Lowe singles. Mendoza, whose two homers and 7 rbi’s against the Racers decided the earlier what-if game, struck out, Abbott’s third. Sandberg at bat, Lowe steals 2nd. Sandberg grounds out 5-4.
Top 6th: Galindo flies to center. Wiggins took three balls, then looked at two strikes, and singled. Goler also got ahead of Osterman, three consecutive balls, looked at a strike, fouled off three pitches, then hit back to Osterman for the second out. Butler grounded to 3rd. Bottom 6th: Kretschman struck out swinging. Duran struck out swinging on a 3-2 count. Morgan grounded to short.
Top 7th: Patton, who singled earier, out 6-3. T.Williams out 2-3 on dropped third strike. A. Williams flied to right. Bottom 7th: With that all-important first win on the line, can the Pride come back against Abbott, like they did against the Racers? Willis flies out to right. Lappin, on an 0-1 count, slugs a homer, the third hit off Abbott. 2-1. Watley singles, the tying run on base. Lowe flies out to 1st for the second out. Mendoza, the hitting star of this championship series, struck out.
The Bandits take a one-game lead in the best of three championship.
Each team had four hits. Abbott is the winner; Osterman takes the loss.