AKRON, Ohio - The Akron Racers started off their series against the Philadeindelphia Force with a dramatic walk-off victory Wednesday night.
With the Racers (5-6) down 3-2 entering the bottom of the seventh, the Force (2-8) turned to Kristen Erb to try and pick up the save. Erb (0-3) plunked Akron's leadoff hitter, Lisa Modglin to start the inning. A sacrifice and groundball put Modglin on third with two outs and Akron's #1 overall draft pick Katie Cochran came to the plate. Cochran placed a groundball back up the middle to a diving Emily Friedman. By the time the Force second baseman gathered the ball, Cochran was standing on first with her first professional hit and Modglin had scored to tie the game 3-3. Following Cochran, former Olympian Jenny Topping drove a base hit back up the middle of her own to score Cochran and win the game 4-3.
The Force started the scoring in the top of the second inning. Danielle Kinley started the inning with a basehit to leftfield. Later in the inning, Jani Lobpries laid down a sacrifice to third base. Racers' third baseman Crystl Bustos threw the ball in rightfield though and allowed Kinley to score from second base.
The Racers would gain a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third inning when Crystl Bustos launched a home run to leftfield. The home run also plated Modglin for her first of two runs scored.
The Force would tie the game quickly in the top of the fourth inning when Audrey LaFountain laid down a bunt single. After LaFountain stole second base, Clare Burnum followed her with a single to centerfield to drive LaFountain home. Two innings later the Force would take a 3-2 lead with a home run off the bat of Lobpries.
Angela Tincher (1-1) picked up her first victory of the year with a complete game performance. Tincher surrendered three runs, two earned, on six hits and two walks while striking out eight.
For the Force, Megan Gibson (0-1) went six innings allowing two runs on four hits and four walks while striking out seven. Erb picked up the loss and blown save allowing two runs on two hits and a hit batter in two thirds of an inning.
The Racers host the Force for game two of this five game series tomorrow night at 7:05 PM at Firestone Stadium. For ticket information contact the Racers at 330-376-8188 or through their website at www.akronracers.org.