Bandits race past Akron 10-3

 
Daily Herald news services
Updated 6/18/2016 11:08 PM

The Bandits scored three or more runs in three different innings to help give Chicago a 10-3 win over the Akron Racers at The Ballpark at Rosemont on Saturday night.

Bandits starting pitcher Michelle Gascoigne delivered her fourth complete game in as many starts in the victory and is now 2-2 on the young season.

 

The Racers (6-5) opened the scoring with a run in the first, but the Bandits (8-5) responded quickly with a three-run home run from left fielder Natalie Hernandez (2-for-3, HR, 3 RBI). The blast, which clanked off the left field foul poll, was Hernandez's third of the season, placing her in a tie with Taylor Edwards for the team lead.

"I was just focused on seeing the ball and making sure I got my hands out in front," Hernandez said.

Akron answered back in the fourth with a two-RBI single from second baseman Ashley Thomas. Gascoigne had retired eight-straight batters until third baseman Kelley Montalvo singled in the second at bat of the inning.

Yet again, the Bandits answered back in their half of the inning. Catcher Taylor Edwards (1-for-2, 2 R, 2 RBI) scored on a passed ball and with two outs and the bases loaded, third baseman Emily Carosone (2-for-3, R, 2 RBI) roped a single to right field to drive in two runs.

Hernandez said the resilience of the team comes with the Bandits name.

"We need to make sure that we're fighters and we're going to go all out no matter what," she said. "Especially when people score, we're going to fight back."

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Carosone is now 3-for-6 with one run and five RBIs in her first two games with the Bandits.

The 6-3 lead would have been more than enough for Gascoigne -- who allowed only two hits while striking out three through the last three innings -- but the Bandits added four more runs in the fifth.

Three walks loaded the bases for shortstop Jill Barrett and an error by the Racers' second baseman allowed one run to score. Edwards, continuing her torrid pace at the plate, followed with a two-RBI single. Another Racers error allowed a fourth run to cross the plate in the inning.

Not only did Gascoigne's strong pitching help the Bandits in the final innings, highlight reel grabs by Barrett and center fielder Sammy Marshall bookended the final outs of the seventh inning.

The Bandits and Racers play the rubber match Sunday with first pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. at The Ballpark at Rosemont.

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