AKRON, OH (July 18, 2016) – On Sarah Pauly night at Firestone Stadium, it was Scrap Yard Dawgs pitcher Monica Abbott stealing the spotlight, pitching a complete game one-hitter to shut out the Akron Racers 3-0. Abbott struck out 14 hitters and had only surrendered one base runner until the seventh inning.
Taking the circle on Monday night were a pair of pitchers with a combined 20 years of NPF experience in Pauly and Abbott, but in the end, it was the nine-year veteran, Abbott, gaining the edge in the victory.
To lead off the seventh inning, Akron third baseman Kelley Montalvo (Alabama) drew her second walk of the game. Shortstop Sami Fagan (Missouri) followed by hitting a hard ground ball just out of the reach of shortstop Christian Stokes for the Racers’ first hit of the game. Montalvo raced around to third base on the play and Akron brought the tying run to the plate. That would be as far as the rally would go as Abbott struck out the next three hitters to end the game.
Pauly (Texas A&M – Corpus Christi) matched Abbott pitch for pitch early, retiring eight of the first nine batters she faced, but with two outs in the top of the third inning, left fielder Kiki Stokes broke through by lining a solo home run to center field. Right fielder Emilee Koerner followed by blasting another home run to center field to put the Dawgs ahead of Akron 2-0.
“I just told them keep your heads up,” field manager Brian Levin said. “The sun comes up. We play tomorrow. Some days you’ve got it and some days you don’t.”
In the sixth inning, former Racer and current Dawgs second baseman Nerissa Myers smacked a solo shot to build upon the Dawgs lead and give them some breathing room, which Abbott didn’t need.
As for Pauly (Texas A&M – Corpus Christi), she went the distance, but allowed three runs on just four hits.
“She is pitching in tough luck right now,” Levin said. “That’s a couple times in a row that we haven’t scored a lot of runs for her. Like I’ve said before, all I ask of our pitchers is to keep us in games and she did exactly that and offensively we just didn’t get it done.”
Myers had two of the four hits Pauly allowed, with a single in the third inning followed by the home run in the sixth inning. She was the only player on either team to register multiple hits on the day.
Although the end result was not what Pauly had hoped for, she discussed her gratitude for the Racers recognition of her, as they deemed this ‘Sarah Pauly Night.’
“It’s really special,” Pauly said. “Joey likes to do things for players that are loyal to the program and even though this is only my second season on the Racers, I just feel honored that she decided to do this for me tonight.”
The Racers and Dawgs will continue with game two of the three game stretch tomorrow at 7:05 p.m. once again at Firestone Stadium with both teams edging for NPF postseason positioning.
About the Scrap Yard Dawgs:
The Scrap Yard Dawgs will begin competition in the National Pro Fastpitch league in 2016. The Dawgs will provide elite softball players the opportunity to pursue a professional career and inspire the next generation of professionals. Located in the Houston area, the Dawgs organization and its players are committed to demonstrating leadership in community involvement, entertainment, and professionalism. Follow the Dawgs at www.scrapyarddawgs.com or on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
About the Akron Racers:
The Akron Racers, headquartered in Akron, OH, are the oldest existing team in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league, celebrating their 15th Season of Play in 2016. The Racers competed in the Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL) for two seasons in 1999 and 2000 and in the NPF since 2004. Historic Firestone Stadium is home to the Racers and numerous amateur events at all levels of play.
About National Pro Fastpitch (NPF):
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2002, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in diamond sports beyond their collegiate success. The 2016 NPF season will be televised on CBS Sports Network. Coverage includes the NPF College Draft presented by Bownet on Thur., April 14, followed by 23 regular-season games, a Championship Series Preview Special and the 2016 NPF Championship Series. The NPF recently announced that the Scrap Yard Dawgs, located in The Woodlands, Texas, will join the Akron Racers, Chicago Bandits, Dallas Charge, Pennsylvania Rebellion and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2016 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the U.S., Australia, Canada, Japan, the Netherlands and New Zealand, representing the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.
Note to Media
Photos and b-roll of players is available. Interviews with the league commissioner are welcomed, and top players from each team are accessible immediately. If you’re interested in pursuing story angles about professional softball for women, please don’t hesitate to contact us.