League City, TX- -The Texas Thunder lost their last home game of the 2005 season in front of a packed crowd at the friendly confines of Wrigley Field at Big League Dreams in League City. Fans were able to see some impressive hitting, however this time, it came from the visiting Akron Racers.
Thunder pitcher Mayumi Murakami ended the first inning scoreless, but was not so fortunate in the second as the Racers scored 4 runs on 5 hits before she was replaced by Thunder reliever Jamie Falco. Falco walked her first batter and then found herself in a pitchers nightmare, as the next batter she would face was the leagues leader in HRs and RBIs, Crystl Bustos. Bustos, considered by many to be the best hitter in the world, had been hitless the previous three games. To no ones surprise, Bustos finally clobbered one over the 230 ft. centerfield fence to plate 3 more runs. Akron would end the second inning well ahead of Thunder 7-0.
Thunder tried to put a dent in the Racer lead by scoring 1 run in the third as Kim Nesloney led the inning off with a single followed up with a Julie Watson single and then a sacrifice fly by Zaleski that scored Nesloney. This would be the only Thunder run of the game.
Akron would score another run in the fourth and their final run in the sixth off a towering homerun by the NPFs 2004 League MVP, Iyhia McMichael. McMichael would end the day 3 for 4 with 1 HR and 3 RBIs. Bustos was 2 for 4 on the day with 1 HR and 3 RBIs, Kelly Kretschman was 2 for 3 with an RBI and Tobin Echo-Hawk finished 2 for 3 with an RBI.
Thunders Kim Nesloney and Karrie Rider both had two hits each on the day.
The two teams will face each other in a single elimination playoff series starting Saturday, August 27th at 9 PM at St. Benedictine University in Lisle, Ill., home of the Comcast Chicago Bandits. The winner of that game will face either the Comcast Chicago Bandits or the NY Juggernaut in the Championship game at 12 noon on Sunday, August 28th. The Championship game will be followed up by the Homerun Derby and All-Star Game. To purchase tickets call 1-877-7BANDIT.