Allentown, Pa.- Pinch runner Lin Pei Chun of the Chinese-Taipei scored from second base on a stolen base and a throwing error as the Philadelphia Force fell to the Olympic contenders by a score of 3-2 in eight innings on Saturday night at ECTB Stadium. The Force had won their previous seven NPF games including the first two against Chinese-Taipei.
Chinese-Taipei got two runs early off Margo Pruis. They started the scoring in the top of the second inning as catcher Lu Hsueh Mei smacked a line-drive home run into the left field foul pole. In the third, they would add another. Consecutive singles by Lai Meng Ting and Pan Tzu Hui put runners on first and second. Chen Miao Yi moved them both along with a sacrifice bunt. Lo Hsiao Ting drilled a grounder to shortstop that Chelsea Spencer bobbled, but recovered in time to get Tzu Hui at third base and Meng Ting scored on the play to put Chinese-Taipei up 2-0.
The Force (12-3) answered back in their half of the third. A two-out single by Sharonda McDonald, who is fifth in the NPF in hitting with a .349 batting average, and a wild pitch put a the speedy centerfielder on
second base. Kellie Wilkerson, the NPF’s leading hitter, stroked her second double of the game to plate McDonald. Wilkerson went 2-for-4 on the night and her average fell to .531.
In the fourth inning, the Force would tie the score without the benefit of a hit. Spencer started the frame with a walk. She moved to second base when Megan Gibson was a robbed of a home run by centerfielder Miao Yi. But on the play, Miao Yi crashed through the break-away fence to cause a dead-ball and allow Spencer to be awarded second. Savannah Long followed by being hit by a pitch and a failed fielder’s choice off the bat of pinch hitter Jenna Hall load the bases for the Force. Emily Friedman then popped a foul ball towards the Chinese-Taipei’s first-base dugout. Both the first baseman and catcher raced for the ball which the first baseman caught, but no one covered home plate. Thus the alert Spencer hustled home on the usual sacrifice fly to tie to score.
For the third game in a row, the contest went to extra innings. With Amy Harre in the circle after replacing Pruis in the fourth inning, Chinese-Taipei would score the go-ahead run. A walk to Chiang Hui Chuan, who was pinch ran for by Pei Chun, and a single by Wen Li Hsiu put runners on first and second. Chinese-Taipei then successfully pulled off a double steal and when Force’s catcher Kristen Miller bounced into left field, Pei Chun came home with what proved to be the winning run.
As for the pitchers, Lai Sheng Jung picked up the win. She went seven innings and allowed five hits. Wu Chia Yen pitched the last inning to record the save. For the Force, Pruis yielded five hits and two runs in
3.2 innings of work. Harre (3-2) who was tabbed with the loss, give up two hits and struck out two. The winning run she allowed was unearned.
The teams conclude their series, and the Force’s international schedule, on Sunday at 5:05 pm. The first 300 fans arriving at the game tomorrow received free Majestic throwback replica NPF T-shirts.