Just before the Arizona Heat thanked the 1,398 fans of Tucson for their loyal support with a fireworks extravaganza, Tarrah Beyster got the show started early with a towering homerun over the left field fence to seal the victory for Arizona over California 3-1.
Danielle Henderson picked up the win for the Heat improving her record to 3-0 on the season with Arizona. She is now 2-0 at home since coming to Arizona from Akron in a trade.
I really like Arizona, said Henderson. One of the best things to happen to me this summer was coming to Arizona. I am very happy to be a member of the Heat.
She also recorded eight strikeouts. She credits some of her recent success to the chemistry she has developed with Heat catcher Leah Braatz.
I trust what she calls, said Henderson. She has seen these hitters a lot this year, and she has great experience behind the plate.
The Heat got on the board early with a run in the second and one in the third. California would cut the lead in half with a run in the top of the fifth. But in the bottom of the sixth, Beyster, pinch-hitting for Braatz, took a 2-0 pitch from California starter Kristen Voak for a long ride and Arizona would shut the door on the Sunbirds in the seventh.
Also providing offense for the Heat was Katie Gutierrez who went 3-for-3 with one RBI.
The Heat improves to 14-29 while the Sunbirds drop to 12-32 on the season. Arizona is now just four games behind New England for the final playoff spot after the Riptide fell to NY/NJ 2-1 in Lowell, Mass.
The Arizona Heat is part of the six-team National Pro Fastpitch softball league. Heat home games are played at Hi Corbett Field. For tickets or information about the team or league, call (520) 296-9595 or visit www.tucsonsoftball.com