Rookie pitcher Mel Dumezich tossed a complete, 4-hit shutout Thursday night in her Bandits debut, striking out seven. The Bandits' offense was on fire in a 5-0 victory over the visiting Akron Racers.
"It's an honor to be out here with all these great athletes," Dumezich said. "Hopefully I'll bring a different look to the Bandits this season and help the team win another championship."
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Lisa Norris started for Akron and was relieved by Rachele Fico and Jen Mineau.
The Bandits' offense started out strong with a run in the bottom of the first. Amber Patton got on base with a single up the middle and scored when Racer's shortstop Bridgette Del Ponte dropped Kristen Butler's infield popup.
Dumezich pitched her way out of a jam in the bottom of the second, striking out a pair with the bases loaded to preserve the Bandits' lead.
The Bandits extended their lead in the second after Megan Wiggins hit a deep 3-run homer to dead-center, scoring Vicky Galindo and Kimi Pohlman and extending the lead to 4-0.
The rally continued after Patton singled, stole second and scored off Alisa Goler's RBI single up the middle, making the score 5-0 heading into the third inning.
After highlighting the second with a home run, Wiggins took over on defense in the third to rob Bri Hesson of a hit with a diving catch and doubling up Sam Marder at first base.
"I have been working really hard, coming off the Japan season, I'm still in shape and seeing the ball well," Wiggins said. "I'm just trying to carry over my success in Japan and be productive for the Bandits.
"I'm really proud of this team and impressed with the newcomers, you can't even tell they are rookies. We had a lot of potential last year and so far we're looking really good with a lot of potential again this year so I am looking forward to it."
The Bandits made outstanding defensive plays throughout the entire game to keep the Racers scoreless, giving Dumezich her first career victory and the Bandits their second win of the season.
The Bandits and Racers return to action Friday night at The Ballpark at Rosemont for the third game of the series. First pitch is 7:35 p.m.