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Venezuela Takes Game Two in Series

June 10, 2005 – Lisle, Ill-
A heartbreaker for the Chicago Bandits as they lost game two in the series against Team Venezuela, leaving the two teams even at 1-1 through the first two games of the series. Despite offensive success throughout the night, the Bandits were thwarted by leaving 11 runners on base.
Pitcher Gina Oaks started the game off with a three up, three down first inning with two strikeouts. The Bandits were able to make it on base, Venezuelan pitcher Marianelle Castellanos copied the trend of two strikeouts to close the inning.
The action started for the Bandits in the second inning as Haley Viefhaus led off. A few feet short of clearing the fence, Viefhaus jogged to second on her ground rule double as the ball bounced just once before going over. Laura Harms successfully stole second after her single. Megan Ciolli walked to put runners on first and second. Harms and Ciolli advanced on Anne Steffan’s swinging third strike. Liz Bouck swiftly reached first base before the ball left shortstop Denisse Fuenmayor’s hand, bringing in Harms to score the first run, the other runners remained stranded.
Nidia Pinieda started the rally for Venezuela in the top of the third with an in-the-park homerun. Unfazed by the shot in deep left field, Oaks eliminated the next two batters with a pair of strikeouts. The inning ended with an incredible diving catch by Ciolli in center.
Bottom of the fourth, Venus Taylor earns a base hit with a hard grounder to shortstop. Harms popped up to the catcher who quickly turned it to a double play, beating Taylor back to first. Ciolli walked for a second time in the game, followed with Steffan’s wheels beating out a throw to first. Mel Wallach replaced Bouck for just a minute as she loaded the bases with a fielder’s choice, with Bouck immediately re-entering to run. Venezuela brought in a new arm, putting Mariange Bogado in the circle to successfully get them out of the jam.
With the game tied until the sixth inning, Venezuela was next to strike.
Zuleima Rodriguez stole first after a dropped third strike. Viefhaus caught a short fly and overthrew first attempting to get the double play. Rodriguez quick on her feet, raced to second safely. Yusmari Perez was brought in to pinch run for Rodriguez. Ciolli dove for the second time tonight on Leslys Gomez’s hit, but this time sliding too far underneath the ball allowing Perez to round to the plate to take the lead for Venezuela. Rojas drove in the second run to give Venezuela a 3-1 lead. Mavia Soto hits a shot to Harms, who tags second and guns it to first for a double play to end the inning.
Batting for Harms, Lindsey Hamma makes her batting debut at the bottom of the sixth with a single. Harms re-entered to steal second, for her third stolen base of the day. Ciolli drove in the run with a double. Oaks walked and stole second. Bogado intentionally walked Collins to create a force at every base. Kate Varde came in to pinch run for Collins. Despite creating an opportunity to take the lead, the Bandits were unable to execute, leaving the bases loaded for the second time in the game.
A couple of errors charged to the Bandits in the seventh forced them to make some changes. Amy Harre came into the circle with runners already on first and third. The Bandits allowed Fuenmayor to steal second on the pitch. With a full count on Pineda, the home umpire asked for assistance on the call, with the third base umpire giving Pineda a ball four to load the bases. Bandits pulled themselves out of the jam by creating three outs in a row.
Controversy arose for the Bandits as Viefhaus reached second, believing it was a double off the glove of Maria Soto, until the home plate umpire called the ball foul returning her to bat. Viefhaus’ second chance was not as gratifying as she struck out. Bogado continued her groove, striking out the next two batters to end the game, giving Venezuela the victory at 3-2.
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