USSSA Pride 5, Bandits 4
Rosemont, Ill. — A late rally by the USSSA Pride’s offense would lead them to a 5-4 victory over the Chicago Bandits Friday night.
The eventual game-winning run would come courtesy of the Pride’s Jessica Mendoza, who hit a ball toward the right side of the infield on a 2-2 count from Bandits pitcher Nikki Nemitz.
The ball would be hit pass Bandits first baseman Dorian Shaw and second baseman Vicky Galindo scoring, Pride shortstop Natasha Watley give USSSA a 5-4 lead.
Things started of with the Pride making some history in Rosemont Stadium in the top of the second inning, specifically in the home run department.
In the the second inning, Pride catcher Melissa Roth launched a 1-0 pitch from Chicago Bandits starting pitcher Jamee Juarez right over the right-center field wall, just clipping the bottom of the scoreboard. The former Louisville backstop’s homer was the first long ball hit by a Pride player this year, and the first regular season home run at Rosemont Stadium. Alexis Jager hit the first home run at the stadium in an exhibition contest against the Bloomington Lady Hearts on June 4.
n the bottom of the third inning, Bandits outfielder Caitlin Lever would start a productive inning with a leadoff walk off from Pride starting pitcher Sarah Pauly.
One batter later, Megan Wiggins would hustle her way for an infield single, and from there right fielder Amber Patton would drive her teammates home by sending a Pauly pitch up the middle to give the Bandits a 2-1 lead.
But that wouldn’t be all for the Bandits in the bottom of the third inning.
With Wiggins waiting patiently at second base, and right after a Rachel Folden walk, Alisa Goler would go shopping in the gap in right center, bringing home Wiggins and Folden to pad the Bandits lead to 4-1.
In the top of the sixth inning, with a 4-1 lead, the Pride would climb back into the game with a three-run inning to tie it all up at 4 a piece.
Mendoza would shoot a Juarez pitch out to the right field wall, and Pride first baseman Charlotte Morgan would score the runner with an RBI single to cut the deficit to 4-2.
Roth would follow up her second inning solo home run with an RBI single to right field, scoring Mendoza and inching the Pride closer, trailing 4-3.
Roth would eventually score after Folden had a throwing error to second base attempting to catch the runner, but Morgan would take advantage of the costly error to tie the game at 4-4.
After Mendoza’s clutch single, Pride reliever Cat Osterman would work her magic with two no-hit relief innings to seal the victory for the Pride.
—Courtesy of Andrew Phillips
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!