8-3-2013 NPF Roundup

August 3 2013


AKRON, OH – July 12, 2013
– The Akron Racers struggled against the USSSA Pride on both sides of the ball in tonight’s 12 -1 loss to the Pride.  The Racers batters managed just four hits and one run while the Racers pitchers combined to give up 12 runs on 15 hits.  Brittany Mack was charged with the loss for the Racers and Sarah Pauly receives the win for the Pride. Mack’s record is now 2-4 and Pauly jumps to 8-4.
Mack pitched just 2.0 innings and finished with a line of seven hits, eight runs, two walks, and one strike out.  She struggled early and started the game by walking Natasha Watley on a full count.  Watley proceeded to make it around the bases and was able to score on a sac hit by Kristyn Sandberg and gave USSSA a 1-0 lead in the first inning.
The Pride leapt ahead to an even larger lead in the second inning.  Andrea Duran lead off for the Pride and hit a solo home run into left field to boost the lead to 2-0.  Then Mack followed by striking out Francesca Enea, before Lauren Lappin reached on a bunt.  After that, the Pride were able to find holes in the Racers infield.  Ashley Charters hit a ball into right field just beyond Aja Paculba’s glove. Watley followed by walking again. Caitlin Lowe hit a ball into left field past a diving Del Ponte and Lappin scored from third to give the Pride a 3-0 lead.  Kelly Kretschman hit a single into right field and Watley and Charters both scored.  Lowe scored on a wild pitch and the Pride led 6-0 at the end of the second.
USSSA added two more to their lead in the third inning on a two run homerun by Francesca Enea after Andrea Duran started the inning off with a double. After the Pride jumped ahead to 8-0, Jen Mineau came in to relieve Brittany Mack.  Mineau got Lappin to fly out to right field for the first out of the inning but walked Ashley Charters immediately after Lappin’s fly out.  Mineau was able to get the next two batters to ground out to second and get out of the inning.
In the fourth inning, the Pride tacked on four more runs.  With the bases loaded, Duran hit a bouncing grounder into centerfield and Nikia Williams came around to score from third.  However, Karino made a solid throw from centerfield to Castillo at home plate and Castillo was able to get Sandberg out at the plate. Then, Francesca Enea hit an identical bouncing grounder into centerfield to Karino again, but this time Castillo was not able to make the tag at home on Karino’s throw.  With the Pride leading 11-0, Hillary Bach came into relieve Mineau. Mineau pitched 1.1 innings and gave up four runs on four hits and had one walk.  Bach faced Lappin first after coming into the circle and she sac flied into right field and allowed the runners to tag up and Andrea Duran came home to score.  Ashley Charters followed with a single and Enea came home to add another run to bring the Pride lead to 12-0.
Keilani Ricketts came in for relief for the Pride in the bottom of the fifth inning.  Pauly threw for four innings and gave up two hits to go along with one walk and struck out six. Ricketts pitched 3.0 innings and gave up two hits, one run, and one walk. She had three strikeouts and received the save.
The Racers were finally able to get on the board in the bottom of the sixth inning.  Kaylyn Castillo sent a long fly ball into left field and was able to run out a double.  Jessica Garcia followed by sending a long ball of her own into right field and was able to advance to second on an error, while Castillo was able to come around to score, bringing the score to 12-1.
The Racers return to action in the second game of their four game series against the Pride tomorrow night at 7:05 pm.  The game will be taped and rebroadcast on Tuesday on the Time Warner Sports Network.


Tampa, Fla. – August 1, 2013 – The third Annual Champions Festival™ is scheduled to take place on Saturday, August 24, 2013, at The Dome adjacent to The Ballpark at Rosemont in Rosemont, Ill. The 3-hour event will begin at 12 p.m. central time. The 2013 Championship Festival will include Olympians Monica Abbott, Crystl Bustos, Andrea Duran, Lori Harrigan-Mack, Kelly Kretschman, Lauren Lappin, Caitlin Lowe, Cat Osterman, and Natasha Watley along with NFCA Hall of Famers Margie Wright, Cindy Bristow, and Sue Enquist. The Champions Festival™ precedes Game #2 of the NPF Championship Finals (best of three) is scheduled for 4:00 pm central time and the “if” game will follow immediately after 4:00 pm game.


Contact Championsfestival.com to purchase Champions Festival™ tickets. Attend the Champions Festival and you will receive free admission  to the NPF Championship Series Finals. Tickets are $35.00 each (including game tickets). Group rates available (10 or more $15.00 each).


The Festival is supported by National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), ASA/USA Softball, and the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA).


Pride Split Double Header, Win Series vs. Chicago in Extra Innings

GiOnna DiSalvatore (Photo by Rachel Goosens)
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. 

Game 1


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.

Game 2
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


Racers Comeback Falls Short; Akron Drops Series Final 7-5

Akron, Ohio – July 31, 2013
– The Racers may have been down, but they were certainly not out of Wednesday’s series final with the NY/NJ Comets.The Racers combined for all five of their runs in the fifth and sixth innings, but were unable to muster a large enough comeback to defeat a seven-run deficit. 

Racers’ starter Ivy Renfroe started off strong, limiting the Comets to just one hit through the first three innings. NY/NJ was able to break through, though, posting five runs in the top of the fourth.


Angeline Quiocho’s leadoff single got the rally started for the Comets, and then she quickly advanced to third on a single from Bianca Mejia. A wild pitch by Renfroe sent Quiocho racing home, giving the Comets a 1-0 advantage. Courtney Liddle advanced the Comets’ lead further with an RBI double to left-center field.


The Racers called to the bullpen after the Liddle double, but Samie Garcia and the Comets quickly jumped on reliever Rachele Fico. Garcia sent the second pitch see saw from Fico over the right field fence, putting the Comets up 5-0.


As Angel Bunner continued to hold the Racers hitless, the Comets added another run for their starting pitcher in the top of the fifth. Mejia came through again for NY/NJ, getting the rally started with a double off the right field fence. A walk and a hit by pitch loaded the bases for the Comets, then a fielding error by Fico allowed another run to score.


The Racers were able to match that one run in the bottom half of the frame, though, and break up Bunner’s no hitter. Jessica Garcia and Ayumi Karino drew back-to-back walks to lead off the inning, and then a wild pitch put both runners in scoring position. Rookie Brianna Turang broke through for the Racers’ first hit of the game with an RBI single down the left field line, which scored Jessica Garcia.


Akron went to their bullpen once again in the sixth inning, brining in Hillary Bach to close out the game for the Racers. The Comets posted their seventh and final run off Bach in the sixth behind the bat of Quiocho. Samie Garcia started the inning with her second extra-base hit of the night, a double to left field. Quiocho brought her home two batters later with her fifth RBI of the season.


Refusing to go down easy, the Racers rattled Bunner for a four-run sixth inning. Kaylyn Castillo got the rally started for Akron with a single up the middle, then Brigette Del Ponte and Jessica Garcia followed Castillo’s lead and recorded back-to-back singles to bring Castillo home. After Karino grounded out to first base, rookie Tess Sito helped the Racers inch closer with an RBI single, which scored Del Ponte. Brianna Turang wouldn’t let the Racers’ rally die there and brought home a pair of runners with a two-RBI single down the left field line.


Akron continued to fight back in the seventh, but a double play by Samie Garcia would end the Racers’ chance at a comeback.


The Racers have Thursday off but will be back at Firestone Stadium on Friday to begin a four-game series with the USSSA Pride. The first pitch for Friday’s game is scheduled 7:05 p.m.


BOXSCORE: http://www.pointstreak.com/baseball/boxscore.html?gameid=142150


Fico Notches Two More NPF Wins
BATON ROUGE – Former LSU All-American pitcher Rachele Fico added two more complete game victories to her 2013 National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) season over the past week. In the process, the Akron Racers rookie right-hander improved her record to 4-4 for the season.

Fico bounced back to fire five shutouts frames after being touched up for five runs during the first two innings against the USSSA Florida Pride on July 26. The Racers rallied for the 10-5 win sparked by a pair of three-RBI performances from Charlotte Morgan and Taylor Schlopy. She also provided 3.1 innings of two-run, two-hit relief which enabled Akron to lock up a 7-6 triumph over the Pride on July 25. Fico came away with back-to-back victories for the first time in her professional career as the Racers claimed an 8-4 victory over the New York/New Jersey Comets on July 29. She fell behind 3-0 early, but Akron rallied behind a five-run fifth inning and Tess Sito’s four-RBI effort.

Brittany Mack lost her lone outing of the week, a 5-0 decision to the Pride on July 25. She tossed four shutout innings to open the game as Akron’s offense was held to one hit by former Texas standout and USA Olympian Cat Osterman. For the season, Mack’s record dropped to 2-3.

Akron heads into the final three weeks of the regular season with a 13-22 record and sits in third place of the NPF standings. The Racers play host to the USSSA Florida Pride for a four-game series starting Friday. The 2013 NPF Championship will begin on August 22 hosted by the Chicago Bandits.

National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee. 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.






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