TUCSON, Ariz. The Arizona Heat lost Erica Beach in the first inning after a collision with third baseman Lisha Ribellia injured Beach forcing her to leave the game in a 5-0 loss to the first-place Texas Thunder in front of 530 at Hi Corbett Field.
She faced only two batters before getting Thunder second-baseman Lindsay Gardner to pop-up to the shallow infield. Ribellia and Beach both made diving attempts to catch the ball when the collision occurred. Ribellia ended up making the catch for the out.
Tarrah Beyster came in for the injured Beach. Details of Beachs injury were not immediately available. She is the team leader in wins, strike-outs, and ERA average. She only needed to throw one pitch and Heat catcher Leah Braatz caught a Thunder base-runner stealing to end the inning.
From then on, Texas played small-ball, bunting successfully throughout the night and being aggressive on the bases. They scattered 12 hits in all.
Offensively, the Heat only struck-out four times on the night. Every shot sounded great off the bat but ended up in the gloves of the Thunder defense. Texas starter Christa Williams pitched six innings of shut-out ball while allowing only two hits against Arizona. Marissa Young came relieved her in the seventh recording two strikeouts in her first save opportunity. It was Williams sixth win.
For Arizona, Beyster picked-up the loss, her seventh, while Beach earns a no-decision. The Heat (9-14) get no rest as they play host to the Akron Racers beginning Wednesday night for a three-game set.