The Chicago Bandits took game one of a five-game series with the Tennessee Diamonds last night at Judson University in Elgin with a thrilling come-from-behind 5-4 win. It was the second late-winning home rally for the Bandits on the season.
All four Tennessee Diamonds runs came via the solo home run, with Carly Wynn (3rd), Megan Gibson and Loryn Johnson (back-to-back in the 4th), and Chelsie Mesa (7th) all going "yard".
Down 3-0 in the bottom of the fourth, Bandits catcher Rachel Folden led off the frame with a double. Bandits first baseman Samantha Findley then connected on a two-run home run over the Judson Eagles scoreboard in left field to pull Chicago within one run. The Bandits scored three times on only one hit in the bottom of the sixth with the help of a wild pitch and a two-run Diamonds throwing error with the bases loaded.
Mesa's solo shot to lead off the Diamonds' seventh pulled Tennessee within one run, but Bandits reliever Nikki Nemitz (Michigan) came on in relief of Kristina Thorson, struck out two of the three hitters she faced, and picked up the save.
Kristina Thorson (Cal-Berkeley) picked up her third win in five decisions with six solid innings of work, while Megan Gibson (Texas A & M) took the loss for the Diamonds and fell to 0-5.
With the win and USSSA Pride's extra inning 5-4 loss to the Akron Racers, Chicago pulled within three games of first place. The Pride and Racers are tied for first place heading into this weekend's games.
The teams meet again tonight, with pregame coverage on mlb.com to begin at 6:55 PM Central Time, and first pitch to follow at 7:05 PM CT. The teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday with the games scheduled for 2 and 7PM. There will be youth softball before game one and men's professional softball between the NPF games at approximately 4:30 PM. The day's festivities will conclude with a fireworks show after the nightcap.
The series concludes with a 2:05 matinee on Sunday afternoon.
For Bandits tickets, call 1-877-7BANDIT or go to their website at chicagobandits.com