HICKORY – The Carolina Diamonds bats were rolling Friday evening at Hickory’s LP Fran’s Stadium in a 10-2 victory over the Chicago Bandits.
In all, the Diamonds would hit five home runs - including two by third baseman Kelsi Weseman - and rookie pitcher Angel Bunner would throw complete game victory.
“It was a lot of fun. They hit the ball, made the adjustments we needed to and Weseman just crushed the ball,” Diamonds head coach Lisa Navas said after.
Bunner got the start for the Diamonds against Chicago’s Chandra Bell, a start which saw her strike out three and walk three in six innings.
“I had my defense there, my offense was there and my catcher (Amy Hooks) and I were on the same page so it felt great,” Bunner said. “I feel good. My body is loose and I felt like I was good to go before the game.”
Diamonds third baseman Kelsi Weseman put the Diamonds on the scoreboard first with a solo home run to right-center field in the bottom of the second inning.
Carolina would tack another on the board the next inning when Natalie Villarreal hit a home run over the right field fence to make it 2-0.
The Bandits, however, got a run in the top of the fourth when Amanda Williams brought in Amber Patton.
Weseman moved the Diamonds lead to 4-1 in the fourth, though, with her second home run in as many at bats, bringing Rachel Folden in too. It was also Weseman’s ninth home run for the season which puts her atop the league leaders, one up over Folden’s eight and Carolina first baseman GiOnna DiSalvatore’s third place seven homers. Amy Hooks soon followed with her own blast to center field, making it 5-1.
Chicago’s Kristen Butler would drive in Vicky Galindo from third in a fielder’s choice to make it 5-2 in the fifth. GiOnna DiSalvatore replied with a solo homer to left field at the Diamonds at-bat, increasing the lead to 6-2. Amy Hooks would hit a single that dropped in center field short enough for Jazyln Lunceford to round third for the Diamonds seventh run.
Amanda Kamekona then came to the plate in the bottom of the sixth and hit a two-run homer that hung in the air before clearing the left field fence. The Diamonds would score several batters later when an errant throw to first in an attempted double play secured a single for Bianca Mejia and DiSalvatore took home.
“It felt really good. I guess I was hitting the ball really well,” Weseman said. “I have been struggling a little bit and finally put it all together. I think everyone was a lot more relaxed today. We just came out here to play. Bunner pitched a great game and I wasn’t the only one, everyone was hitting the ball really well.
About National Pro Fastpitch:
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fastpitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL). NPF is the Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women’s fastpitch softball since 2002.