2017 NPF

Championship Series

August 17-20


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Game Box Score

Akron , Ohio – Some consider Crystl Bustos to be the Babe Ruth of softball and Friday evening she displayed why she has that title. The two-time Olympian, who holds Olympic records for both home runs and RBI's, smashed two balls over the fence, including a grand slam, in the Akron Racers 12-1 victory over the Arizona Heat.

Bustos went 2-for-3, with three runs scored and seven RBI's. Her first longball came with two runners on in the second inning. She took the Heat's Celena Valasquez's offering to the opposite field and punched it over the right-centerfield fence to give Akron a 6-1 lead. Then with the bases loaded in the fifth Bustos broke the game open with a line-drive grand slam that just cleared the wall in left. The Racers took a commanding 11-1 edge.

Bustos wasn't the only Racers player with a solid evening. Center-fielder and lead-off hitter Iyhia McMichael got things started for the Racers (5-1) in the bottom of the first when she took the first pitch she saw deep to center for her first home run of the year. McMichael finished the game 2-for-4 with three runs scored and an RBI.

Oli Keohohou also delivered at the plate going 3-for-4, just a triple shy of the cycle. Her first inning home run to left was her second of the season. The 12 runs and 14 hits for the Racers were both season highs.

As good as the bats were, pitcher Jamie Southern was just as impressive. The right-hander tossed her third complete game, in as many starts, to improve to a 3-0 record. She tallied 11 strikeouts while allowing only one run on three hits. She struck out the sides in both the second and third innings and retired 14-straight batters at one point.

Heat (2-5) starter Celena Velasquez gave-up six runs, including three home runs, before being lifted after an inning and two thirds. She took the loss and is now 0-4 on the year.

The Racers and Heat will conclude their four-game series Saturday evening at Firestone Stadium with a 7:05 p.m. first pitch. It is Amy Kyler night and all fans in attendance will receive a free Amy Kyler trading card.