Lowell, Mass.-- The New England Riptide and Texas Thunder met for the fourth and last time at Martin Softball Field in Lowell on Sunday. Riptide pitcher Jocelyn Forest and Thunder pitcher Amanda Freed were locked in a classic pitchers duel through the first four innings, each giving up only one hit.
Neither pitcher was overpowering, Forest striking out three and Freed, five for the night, but each was keeping the opponents off balance. The top of the fifth was a disaster for the 'Tide as they yielded four unearned runs, all coming as a result of two Forest errors. That was the only scoring of the game as the Thunder won, 4-0. The Riptide only managed two hits on the night, both by Lyndsey Angus, the first leading off the game and the second a bunt single in the sixth.
In the fifth, Forest led the inning off by hitting Adrian Gregory. When Karrie Rider attempted to bunt her over, Forest fielded the ball and threw it to the left of Sarah Andersen, allowing Rider to get to second and Gregory to third.
After Crystal Krebs struck out, Erin Evans stepped up and Texas attempted a squeeze. The bunt went hard to Forest who might have had a play at the plate, but overthrew Jess Allister, allowing each runner to advance. Then Kristen Zaleski hit a triple into the gap in left center to score Evans and Rider. This was the first hard hit ball off Forest all night, but it was enough. Zaleski scored the fourth on the Thunder's second sqeeze of the inning, this one perfectly executed by Freed.
The Riptide are off for a few days before hosting the Venezuela National Team in a four-game series from Wednesday June 29 through Saturday July 2. All games are at 7:05pm. Wednesday June 29 is Report Card Night at the Ballpark. Any middle or high school student with at least three A's in major academic subjects on their 4th quarter report card will be admitted free.