Spring, Texas After watching Cat Osterman throw out the first pitch on Saturday night, the Texas Thunder used the long ball to beat the Arizona Heat 4-3 behind a solid pitching effort from staff ace Christa Williams.
With the offense struggling over the last six games, Lindsay Gardner and Karrie Rider each went deep to give the Thunder just enough offense.
Gardners shot came in the second inning after she swung and missed on an
apparent hit-and-run the pitch before. Rider delivered the decisive two-run blast in the bottom of the third inning, driving in Kim Nesloney who had walked two batters before. The homerun for Gardner was her third of the season, while Riders was her second.
While Gardner and Rider were busy supplying the offense, Christa Williams was doing her job keeping the Heat off-balance in the circle.
Texas would add an extra insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning. Julie Watson, who was pinch-running for Danyele Gomez who singled, came around to score from first on a three base throwing error by Heat third baseman Jackie Coburn.
Williams, now 6-0 on the season and tied for the league lead in wins with Akrons Amy Kyler, went five and a third innings in the game to record the win. She allowed six hits and two runs, both earned, while striking out five. She now has struck out more hitters than any other pitcher in the league with 52.
Amanda Freed relieved Williams in the sixth and record the final five outs to record her team-best second save of the season.
With the win the Thunder improve to 10-6 on the season, while Arizona drops to 7-9.
Saturdays game may have also been the final game this season for Thunder utility player Freed due to her commitment with the United States National Team. Freed will, however, return to Houston at the end of July when the National Team takes on the Thunder.
Texas will look to avenge a 3-1 series loss earlier this month to the expansion Force when Philadelphia visits the Thunder next week. The series will begin on Wednesday night, June 28 at 7:05 p.m. All four games of the series will begin at 7:05 p.m. at Big League Dreams in League City (I-45 and Calder Road).
For more information on the Texas Thunder or to purchase tickets, contact Aaron M. Moore, general manager, at (281) 403-2475 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information is available on the team by visiting www.thunderprofastpitch.com. Special group packages are also available by calling the Thunder office.