Lisa Norris (Courtesy of Akron Racers)
AKRON, OH – July 11, 2013 – One day after a flash flood turned Firestone Stadium into a veritable Noah’s ark, the Akron Racers snapped both their seven-game losing skid this season and a 16-game home losing streak dating back to July 28 of last year by beating the Comets 1-0 on a beautiful summer evening in Akron.
The game became a lightning-style battle of the aces, with strong showing from both Racers’ veteran ace Lisa Norris and the Comets’ rookie Olivia Galati. Both pitchers tossed complete games, with Norris showing veteran punch by coming out on top. Norris threw just 93 pitches to 27 batters, while giving up just four hits, striking out five and walking three. Galati nearly matched her but for one unearned run, giving up just two hits and striking out four Racers in her six innings of work. The two pitchers also combined for six one-two-three innings, which allowed the teams to complete the game in just 83 minutes.
The Racers got on the board quickly, scoring the lone run of the game in the first inning when Sam Marder’s sacrifice fly to shallow right-center field drove home Brianna Turang. Turang’s run was unearned since she led off the game by reaching base on an error by Comets third baseman Brittney Lindley. Turang then stole second and, after an intentional walk to slugger Charlotte Morgan, moving to third base on Kaylyn Castillo’s single. That single loaded the bases for the ever-dangerous Marder, who delivered with the sac fly and RBI.
Norris got into a bit of a puddle in the top of the fourth inning when Bianca Mejia led off with a single. Two sac bunts and a walk later she stood 60 feet away from tying the game, with teammate Kelsi Weseman right behind her on second base. But Norris caught Courtney Liddle looking to end the inning and silence the threat.
The Racers defense, which suffered from some inconsistency early in the season, showed nothing but smooth skills in the field and did not commit any errors. Rookie second baseman Tess Sito shone especially bright, playing a part in nine of the 21 outs in the game, from catching a line drive for the game’s second out to teaming up with fellow rookie Brigette Del Ponte for the second out of the sixth inning.
The Racers and the Comets are scheduled to play the next game of this five-game set tomorrow evening, July 12, at 7:05 p.m.
-Lisa Norris pitched her third complete game shutout of the season, needing just 93 pitches to get the win.
-Sam Marder drove in the lone run of the game with a sac fly in the bottom of the first inning.
-The Racers snapped a seven-game losing streak this season and a 16-game home losing streak dating back to July 28, 2012.
SITE: Firestone Stadium
SCORE: Racer 1, Comets 0
RECORDS: Racers (7-13), Comets (3-18)
NEXT RACERS GAME: Friday, July 12 @ 7:05 p.m. vs. NY/NJ Comets
About the Akron Racers:
The Akron Racers, headquartered in Akron, OH, are the oldest existing team in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league. The Racers competed in the Women's Pro Softball League (WPSL) for two seasons in 1999 and 2000 and in the NPF since 2004. Historic Firestone Stadium is home to the Racers and numerous amateur events at all levels of play. The Racers kick off their 11th season of play in 2012.
About National Pro Fastpitch:
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.
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Written by Nina Zimmerman for the Akron Racers