ROSCOE, Ill. – The Philadelphia Force got a first inning home run from Megan Gibson and three more runs in the second inning to coast to a 6-1 victory over Rockford at Thunder Park on Friday night.
Thunder (11-12) starting pitcher Megan Brown only was able to work into the third inning in the circle as she gave up all four runs on five hits. Control was again an issue for Brown on the mound. She only walked one in the game, but had several three ball counts and her two wild pitches led to a Force run.
In the second inning the first four batters of the inning reached, including back-to-back hits by Emily Friedman and Trena Peel. Both players came in to score in the inning, as did Tori Yamaguchi, who reached base on a fielder’s choice and eventually came in to score on a Clare Burnum sacrifice fly.
On the offensive side of the ball the Thunder couldn’t get anything going in the game off of Force pitcher Kristin Erb. The rookie hurler from Lock Haven University had the Rockford hitters baffled throughout the game and she allowed just three singles in the game.
The Thunder would score its only run of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Chelsea Spencer led off the inning with one of Rockford’s three hits and she eventually came in to score on a Megan Willis ground out.
Rockford would attempt to make a comeback in the bottom of the seventh inning, but they stranded runners at second and third ending the game at 6-1.
Thursday night’s starter, Samantha Sheeley, was very effective in relief of Brown in the game. The rookie from Emporia State pitched the final five innings and allowed just a two-run, seventh inning home run to the Force’s Danielle Kinley’s.
The Force and Thunder return to Thunder Park for game four of the series on Saturday night with game time scheduled for 6:05 p.m. Allison Kime will return to the circle for Rockford where she will most likely be opposed by the Force’s Jessica Sallinger.
Saturday night at the ballpark will be Fan Appreciation Night and the team will be giving away prizes throughout the evening, including Combat bats and Worth bats. The Thunder will also have some different items available for silent auction.
For more information on the Thunder or to purchase tickets contact the Thunder at (815) 965-7000. Additional information can also be obtained on the Thunder website at www.thunderprofastpitch.com. Tickets can be purchased by visiting www.etix.com or at the ticket booth starting at just $7/each.
GAME NOTES – Friday night was the inaugural Pack the Park and Fireworks Night for the Thunder and more than 1,000 fans were in attendance…At 11 a.m. on Saturday morning the Thunder will offer a clinic for all area youth for just $20 and each clinic participant will receive a ticket to Saturday night’s game…Season ticket holder appreciation day is scheduled for Sunday’s home finale…All season ticket holders are encouraged to be at the stadium by 2:30 p.m. in order to go on the field prior to the game.