The Chicago Bandits record their third shutout this weekend against the Canadian Elite Team, 3-0. Lindsay Chouinard started the game for the Bandits on the mound to pick up the win.
Melanie Matthews laid down a perfect bunt in the first inning paired with quick feet to make her the first Canadian on base this inning.
Canadian Tamra Howren brought along a notable defensive game to Chicago, earning two hits out of three at bats this game. She started off the second inning hitting a shot down the third base line to left field.
Howren attempted to steal second base on the next pitch, but catcher Selena Collins was quick on the motion and gunned a throw to second.
Howren found herself in a bind racing back and fourth between first and second. Bandit infielders executed and sent Howren back to the dugout.
Bandit's shortstop Laura Harms dove into the dirt towards second base to catch a line drive hit by Lindsey Wightman, but the impact of hitting the ball allowed the ball to just slip out.
Christina Enea fired back to Canada's two hits at the top of the inning by leading off with a single and making her way to second from Selena Collin's ground out to third. University of Arizona alumn Mackenzie Vandergeest patiently held off the pitches until Ashley Lanz threw called ball four, allowing Vandergeest to reach first and Enea to third.
Mel Wallach came up for her ninth at bat this season and impressed the crowd with a shot to leftfield. Agrgressively around the bases, Wallach tried to turn the single into a double but was greeted by the throw from left. Both Vandergeest and Enea scored, giving Chicago the lead 2-0.
As the ball projected off of Tiffany Patterson's bat in the third inning, Wallach sprinted towards the fly ball to grab it on the run for an out. In the next three innings, the Canadians were unable to put any runners into play in the three-up/three-down innings. Erin Gee brought the Canadians back in the game with a single up the middle off relief pitcher Gina Oaks.
In the fourth, Wallach continued to rip the ball by shooting it in between right and center field. The two outfielders both went to the end until centerfielder Gee took charge and caught the fly ball.
Collins earned her 22nd hit of the season in the sixth inning to keep her with the second highest amount of hits for the Bandits. Collins is a few hits behind Anne Steffan who has 27 hits.
As the Canadians only had four runners in play the entire game, they created some tension on the Bandits in the top of the seventh when they put three runners on base. Canada's catcher Howren earned her second hit of the game. Howren only made it to first as she was thrown out from left field after Zeilstra hit the ball that way.
Wightman challenged the Bandits with her second hit of the night to the outfield. Even with the two hits in the inning, the Canadian Elite team was unable to put any runs on the board. The Bandits won the game with two less hits than Canada had.
Chouinard picked up the win with three strikeouts and three hits.
Oaks finished off the game for the Bandits getting the save with one strikeout and three hits. Lanz pitched her second loss in a row against the Bandits walking one and giving up four hits.
Sunday's game will begin at noon at the Bandit's home field located at Benedictine University in Lisle, Ill. The first 500 fans ages 14 and under will receive free Schutt Fun Packs. Blue's Clues will also be present with the Blue Clue's Bouncy House. Tickets are still available by calling 1-877-7BANDIT. Check out the official website at www.ChicagoBandits.com
for more information.