AKRON, Ohio The Akron Racers pulled out their second straight come-from-behind win over the New Jersey Juggernaut with a 7-5 victory at Firestone Stadium on Friday night. The Racers offense exploded for four runs in the fifth inning to keep them in first place in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) standings with a two and a half game lead over the Juggernaut.
NY/NJ got on board first with two runs in the first inning and another in the second to take a short-lived 3-0 lead. The Racers responded in the bottom half of the third with a pair of runs off of Juggernaut starter Kaci Clark. Third baseman Tracee McCoy recorded Akrons first base hit of the game with a single to left and moved around the base paths on Brandi Stuarts sacrifice bunt and a Juggernaut error. McCoy touched home as center fielder Iyhia McMichael drew a throw while stealing second. McMichael, who had reached on a walk, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored Akrons second run of the game on designated player Dana Degens RBI single down the right field line.
The Racers tied the game in the fourth inning when left fielder Heather Wright singled to center field and moved to third base on Clarks two-base error. Wright knotted the score as Stuart drove a single to center field for her 11th RBI of the season.
Akron took the lead in the fifth when McMichael legged out an infield single and scored from second on the third Juggernaut error of the game. First baseman Nicole Trimboli drove in the Racers fifth run with a sacrifice fly that scored Danielle Fincham, pinch-running for Degen who had reached on a single. McCoy drove in the Racers sixth run with a single to left, bringing in catcher Jenn Poore who had walked. McCoy went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored to be named the Custom Sports Imprints Player of the game.
Shortstop Kristin Johnson recorded the Racers seventh run of the evening as she reached on a fielders choice and came around to score on Stuarts RBI ground-out. Johnson also made a spectacular over-the-shoulder catch into shallow left field in the first inning to save a run, which was named the Summa Health Care System Play of the Game.
Last weeks NPF Player of the Week, Nikki Myers threw six innings in the pitchers circle, allowing five runs on five hits while striking out two to earn her fifth win of the season. Brandee McArthur came on in the seventh inning to preserve the win, picking up her second save of the year.
The two teams are next in action tomorrow at 1:05 p.m. at Firestone Stadium as the Racers go for the three-game sweep. The Akron Racers will hold its inaugural 9K Opportunity Walk for Women and Girls in Sports before the match-up, with the walk stepping off at 9:30 a.m. at Firestone Stadium. Those interested can register at the stadium starting at 8:30 a.m. Walk participants will receive free admission to the afternoons game as well as a t-shirt and pre-game picnic. Call 330-376-8188 or log on to www.akronracers.com for more information.