New York notches fifth straight comeback victory
Lowell, MA.-July 6, 2005-The New York Juggernaut proved successful in their first away game of the 2005 season with a comeback win over the fourth place New England Riptide on a rainy Wednesday night in Lowell. Peaches James picked up her league leading ninth win of the season, behind the clutch hitting of Nauts RBI leader Ryan Realmuto, who hit the proven game winner in the team's late inning victory over the New England Riptide. Olympic Gold Medalist Natasha Watley led the way for the Nauts with two hits, two runs, two walks and one RBI, as well as right fielder Trena Peel, who blasted a stand-up-triple and notched two RBI on the evening. Danielle Henderson pitched a solid game for the Riptide, including 14 strikeouts, but it wasn't enough as the Nauts fought back to score eight runs in the seventh inning en route to a 9-2 victory.
New York got on the board in the top of the second inning with a signature two out rally. Trena Peel hit a hard line drive to center field to start things off for the Nauts. Three pitches later, left fielder Kim Ogee sliced a ball down the left field line for a stand-up-double. With runners on second and third, Bay Shore native Jaclyn Pasquerella took the first pitch she saw from Henderson to right field, registering an RBI. Pasquerella stole second base before Natasha Watley walked to load the bases for Carri Leto. With a 2-2 count, Leto struck out swinging on an outside pitch to end the scoring for New York.
New York's defense in the bottom of the second stopped the Riptide's scoring threat. Left fielder Ashley Moore reached first base on a fielding error by Pasquerella and then stole second base. With one out, shortstop Stephanie Best hit a double off the left field wall. Chelsea Spencer quickly picked up the ball and threw a rocket to Pasquerella at the third base bag, who dove and slapped the tag on Moore who was rounding third base, keeping the Juggernaut lead at 1-0.
The Riptide struck back in the bottom of the fourth inning, as former Juggernaut and current USA National Team player Kellie Wilkerson took a 3-1 pitch deep over the right field wall to tie the game up at one a piece. James successfully induced Anderson and Moore to strikeout to end the inning.
The Nauts were retired in the top of the fifth by Henderson, who recorded her eighth, ninth and tenth strikeout of the night. The Riptide then led off the top of the fifth with a walk to shortstop Best. James came on strong and retired the next two batters with strikeouts, her fifth and sixth respectively. With two outs, Sarah Jewett hit a triple to deep center over Ogee's head, scoring Best from first base and giving the Riptide the edge 2-1. Angus flied out to right field to end the inning.
Chelsea Spencer, who has been successful in starting many late inning Juggernaut comebacks, was hit by a pitch to lead off the top of the sixth inning. Peel then took the count to 3-2 and fouled off five pitches before striking out, although Spencer stole second base on the play. Ogee popped up to left field and Pasquerella popped up to the shortstop to end the Juggernaut scoring chances in the sixth.
In the top of the seventh, James put two runners on board with walks after striking out Iancin and retiring Anderson with a fly out to left field. With two outs, Stephanie Best hit a hard ground ball to Watley's forehand, but the shortstop misplayed the ball and all the runner's advanced safely. With the bases load and two outs, center fielder Jen Scavone was called out looking on strikes, Scavone's third strikeout of the night.
The Nauts final chance to score in the top of the seventh was led by Natasha Watley. Watley, hitting .480 as a lead off, drew a walk on a 3-2 count. Leto perfectly executed a sacrifice bunt, but an error by Henderson pulled Wilkerson off the bag and Leto was called safe. A wild pitch advanced both runners before Leah Nelson grounded out to the third baseman. With one out, Ryan Realmuto hit a scorching line drive that chalked the left field foul line. Her double scored the decisive two runs to put the Juggernaut ahead 3-2. Laura Taylor went in to pitch hit for Cox, who had three strikeouts, and sent the ball straight up the middle, advancing Realmuto to third base. Peel then drilled a ball to left center field for a stand-up-triple, earning 2 RBIs on the blast. Ogee and Pasquerella reached on consecutive errors as the Nauts batted around the lineup. Watley hit an RBI line drive to center field, increasing the Juggernaut lead to 8-2. Two pitches later, Leto hit a stand-up-triple, scoring Watley from second base which proved to be the last run of the game. Henderson was pulled after 14 strikeouts and three errors, and was relieved by Casey Hunter who retired Leah Nelson. The eight run Juggernaut seventh included five hits, four of which went for extra bases, six RBI, and three Riptide errors.
New England stranded two runners in the seventh, but a lineup error proved to end the game for the Tide. With two outs, Lindsay Angus hit a single to start the rally. Lisa Iancin then hit a shot to Natasha Watley, which would have been scored an error as Iancin reached first, but an erroneous uniform number on the official lineup card automatically called her out and ended the game.
The New York Juggernaut continues their series against New England on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:00 p.m. The Nauts return home to Hofstra University Softball Stadium on Wednesday, July13th as they host the Venezuelan National Team. For tickets or for more information, please call 516-485-0141 or visit the Juggernaut online at www.nynjjuggernaut.com.
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