Rachele Fico - Courtesy of National Pro Fastpitch
Akron, OH – June 15, 2014 - The Racers took the field Saturday looking to extend their four game winning streak. With Rachele Fico in the circle for the Racers, and Sarah Pauly toeing the rubber for the Rebellion, the game looked like a pitchers’ duel from the start.
“Fico gives her all every single time she goes out there,” said catcher Jessica Garcia. “We just have to score runs for her, and that’s what we did – mixing pitches and our offense just going to work.”
Fico threw three scoreless innings, before the Rebellion put a run on the board in the fourth. An error by Ashley Thomas at second allowed Brittney Lindley to reach and a sac bunt from Salling moved her to second. Catcher Taylor Edwards singled and drove in the first run of the game.
In the fifth, however, the Racers bats came alive. Garcia doubled, and a passed ball allowed pinch runner Olivia Watkins to advance to second. An RBI single from Stephanie Tofft would bring a pitching change for the Rebellion, as Dallas Escobedo, the top draft pick in the 2014 NPF draft, would enter the game in relief of Pauly.
The pitching change wouldn’t slow the Racers bats. Karino singled to drive in Tofft, and Nadia Taylor doubled to put runners on second and third. Jill Barrett then singled over a leaping Salling at short to drive in Taylor. A Brianna Cherry single would load the bases and bring up Jessica Garcia, who reentered the game for her second at bat in the inning. Her grand slam soared over the center field fence, and gave the Racers the 8-1 lead that would become the final score.
“I was just looking to hit something hard,” Garcia said of her second home run on the season. “She [Escobedo] beat me two times before, in the other game, so I was just looking to hit something hard.”
The eight run inning was more than enough for the Racers and gave Fico her fourth win of the season. She threw a complete game allowing 1 run on 4 hits and 2 walks, striking out 3 batters. Pauly recorded the loss, throwing 4 innings and allowing 2 runs on 4 hits, with 6 strikeouts. The win was the Racers 5th in a row, and improves their record to 7-5.
SITE: Firestone Stadium
SCORE: Rebellion 1, Racers 8
RECORDS: Rebellion (2-10) Racers (7-5)
The Racers travel to Dallas, Texas to take on the USSSA Pride on June 21 at 8:05 pm ET. For more information about the Akron Racers visit www.akronracers.org
or call (330) 376-8188
The Rebellion returns home Wednesday, June 18 against the Chicago Bandits at 7:05 p.m ET. For tickets and/or group packages, contact the CONSOL Energy Park Box Office at 724.250.7412.
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 13th season of play in 2014.
The Rebellion is a professional women's softball team competing as part of National Pro Fastpitch (NPF). Joining the gritty, fast-paced league in 2014, the Rebellion will play head-to-head against the most talented players in the sport. Games are broadcast nationally and draw local fans of all ages to experience the action live.
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fast pitch 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 fast pitch softball since 2002.