TUCSON, ARIZ The Arizona Heat won their second straight 1-0 game over the Connecticut Brakettes. The Heat used three pitchers to combine on the four hit shutout. Firdays hero April Valdez once again drove in the only run of the night, this time with a bases loaded sacrifice fly in the third.
Celena Velasquez got her first start since June 18 and went two innings without giving up a run. Leslie Wolfe (5-5) relieved her to start the third and allowed just one hit in her two and one-third innings pitched. Desiree Serrano picked up her first save of the season by closing out the game with two and two-thirds hitless innings. Kaci Clark went the distance for the Brakettes allowing just four hits and one run, while falling to 3-3 on the season. She retired the last fourteen batters she faced.
A night after combining to leave 22 runners on base, the Heat and Brakettes struggled to get people on board tonight. Each team managed only four hits and combine to leave eight on base.
Connecticut threatened in the second inning. Affter getting two on base with back-to-back singles, Velasquez got Adrienne Alo to popup and end the inning. The Heat got things going in the second with three straight singles by Nichole Thompson, Toni Mascarenas and Heather Scaglione. Valdez followed by lifting a fly ball to center that was deep enough to score Thompson and put the Heat up 1-0.
Wolfe got into some trouble in the fifth, allowing a leadoff of walk to Julie Brooks. Brooks was sacrificed to second before a walk to Kelly Kretschman put two on. Serrano was called in from the bullpen and got Andrea Duran to ground into a double play to close out the inning.
Serrano was unhittable the rest of the game, allowing only a walk over the final two innings.
The player of the game for the Heat was LaDonia Hughes who made a sensational diving catch in the first to save the game. Hughes laid out for a ball hit into deep left centerfield and pulled in the catch, saving a run.
Nichole Thompson picked up a hit in the second to extend her hitting streak to eight games. Catalina Morris saw her franchise record ten game hitting streak come to an end, finish zero for two.
Germaine Fairchild picked up two of the four Brakettes hits on the night. Heat pitching has now held the Connecticut offense without a run for 19 consecutive innings.
The Heat and Brakettes will square off again tomorrow night at 7pm for the final game of the series.
Contact: Scott Kimmelman, Media Relations, Arizona Heat