AKRON, Ohio An early run lifted the Akron Racers over the first-place New York/New Jersey Juggernaut, 2-0, on Sunday afternoon at Firestone Stadium. National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) Player of the Week, centerfielder Iyhia McMichael, recorded her team-leading sixth RBI to put the Racers ahead of the Nauts in the first inning.
Akron wasted no time getting to NY/NJ starter Courtney Scott, as second baseman Brandi Stuart led off the bottom of the second inning with a single up the middle and advanced to second with her seventh stolen base of the year. McMichael delivered a sharp single down the left field line to score Stuart from third and give the Racers the 1-0 edge. McMichaels 16th hit of the year was the Summa Health Care System Play of the Game.
The Racers never looked back, grabbing an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth when Stuart scored her second run of the game. After working a one-out walk, Stuart moved to second on a past ball, putting herself in scoring position for designated player Jenn Poore. With two outs, Poore grounded to Juggernaut shortstop Lyndsey Klein, who misplayed the ball, allowing Stuart to score from second base.
In the pitchers circle, Radara McHugh was nearly flawless, allowing no runs on two hits while striking out five in her first complete game of the season. The Custom Sports Imprints Player of the Game, McHugh improves her record to 3-0 this season while the Racers improve to 11-6 overall, and are one half game behind Texas and New York/New Jersey, who are tied for first in the NPF standings.
The Racers look to claim sole possession of first as they take on the New York/New Jersey Juggernaut tomorrow at 7:05 p.m. at Firestone Stadium. For ticket, merchandise or group picnic information, call 330-376-8188 or log on to www.akronracers.org.