The Chicago Bandits and the USSSA Florida Pride Courtesy of National Pro Fastpitch
EAST PEORIA, Ill. – July 30, 2015 - Monica Abbott struck out 10 and tossed a two-hit shutout to power the Chicago Bandits to a 4-0 victory over the USSSA Pride in the four-game series finale Thursday night at EastSide Centre.
For the second time in as many nights the Bandits jumped out to a 3-0 lead with a three-run homer. Taylor Edwards followed a Brittany Cervantes double to leadoff the contest and an Amber Patton single with her three-run shot to center to provide all the scoring Chicago would need.
Abbott gave up a leadoff single in the bottom of the first to Natasha Watley, who followed up a four-hit performance Wednesday with a 2-for-3 night at the plate.
The Watley single was one of just two hits given up by Abbott, however, as she retired 12 straight batters at one point before a one-out single in the sixth.
Natalie Hernandez added to the lead with a two-out solo homer to left in the top of the fifth to push the Bandits’ advantage to 4-0.
The shutout was Abbott’s ninth in 10 complete game efforts on the year to improve her record to 11-1.
Keilani Rickets (7-4) fanned nine in five innings of work for the Pride, giving up seven hits and four earned runs in the setback.
Since 2005, the Chicago Bandits have been members of the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league. Located in Rosemont, the Bandits provide an opportunity for female fastpitch players to further their careers at a professional level, and the roster has included such names as Jennie Finch, Stacy May-Johnson and Tammy Williams. The two-time NPF Champions, who are owned by Bill Sokolis, play at The Ballpark at Rosemont, the only stadium in the country built for a women's professional team. The 2015 season will be the Bandits 11th season in the NPF.
The USSSA Florida Pride is a professional franchise in the National Pro Fastpitch League that is owned and operated by USSSA. The amateur organization of USSSA has multi-sport coverage and encompasses teams and players from the United States and abroad.
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) is headquartered in Nashville, Tenn. 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 and has been since 2002.