TUCSON, ARIZ The Arizona Heat completed a sweep of the Southern California Hurricane with a 9-0 victory at Hi Corbett Field. April Valdez threw her first career complete game shutout to improve to 2-1 on the season. Jackie Coburn hit her first homerun to pace the Heat offense.
Valdez made her first start since opening weekend, and responded with a seven hit shutout. Valdez did not walk a batter and struck out one. Mayumi Murakami started for the Hurricane and was chased out of the game after only three innings. She allowed nine runs on eleven hit and suffered her second loss of the series.
The Heat jumped out early in the first, scoring a run and never looking back. Autumn Champion doubled and came around to score two batters later on a RBI double by Nichole Thompson. The Heat were back at it in the second, loading the bases on a pair of bunt singles and a hit batter. Catalina Morris followed with a bases clearing triple to put the Heat up 4-0. Champion singled home Morris to cap of the scoring in the inning.
The third was much of the same for the Heat, scoring four more runs. Kaleo Eldredge led off the inning with a single before stealing second. She would come into score on Valdezs single up the middle. Jackie Coburn followed with a homerun, extending the lead to 8-0. Jen Martinez drove in the fourth run of the inning on a single to center.
Nicki Johnson came on in relief for the Hurricane and held the Heat scoreless for the final three innings.
The Heat defense which had been struggling the previous few series, committed only one error this series. April Valdez led the Heat offense as well, connecting on three hits and driving in a run. Catalina Morris delivered her league leading sixth triple, and added three RBIs. Autumn Champion went two for two with a stolen base. She finished the series with eight hits in eight at-bats and stole four bases. Nichole Thompsons first inning double extended her hitting streak to twelve games.
Amanda Fernandez went two for three, while Brianna Goad added her sixth hit of the series.
The Heat goes on the road for the next two weeks with series against the New England Riptide and the Philadelphia Force. The Riptide series begins Wednesday, August 2nd with the Force series beginning on August 9th.
Contact: Scott Kimmelman, Media Relations, Arizona Heat