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2017 NPF

Championship Series

August 17-20

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Thunder Beats Heat in Season Opener

League City, Tex.-- Texas Thunder scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to claim their first victory of the season besting the Arizona Heat in front of a sold out crowd at Big League Dreams Sports Park in League City Thursday night.

Pitcher Christa Williams took the mound and surrendered only two hits and two walks in her first appearance of the season. She received a few timely hits on behalf of third baseman Clare Burnum and rookie shortstop Adrian Gregory.

The runs came in the bottom of the sixth inning after starting pitcher Erica Beach surrendered back-to-back walks to centerfielder Kristen Zaleski and right fielder Julie Watson.

Second baseman Lindsay Gardner popped up to the catcher on a failed sacrifice bunt attempt, but Burnum picked up the slack, collecting her first RBI single of this season.

Catcher Crystal Krebs then grounded out to first base while both Zaleski and Watson advanced. Gregory then collected her first hit of the season as well as a pair of RBI, as her ground ball up the middle zipped past the pitcher and into centerfield.

The Arizona Heat battled in the top of the seventh. With two runners aboard, first baseman Phelan Wright laced a single into right field plating one run and earning her first RBI of the season. With runners on first and second, Williams retired the next batter and recorded the final out of the ball game as shortstop Tara Knudsen lined out to Gregory who doubled up the Heat runner at first base.

Williams tossed a two hitter and earned her first win of the season while Heat pitcher Erica Beach took the loss. The Thunder move to 1-0 in regular season play while the Heat fall to 5-5.

The second game of the series will begin at 7:00 p.m. Friday, June 10, at Wrigley Field in the Big League Dream Sports Park.