Australian Kaia Parnaby has won her first game as a professional in the USA, pitching the Chicago Bandits to a dramatic win against the top team USSSA Pride.
After falling behind on a leadoff home run by USSSA’s Megan Wiggins, Parnaby settled in and delivered a complete game performance in her second start of the season.
The Bandits earned a two-game sweep against the Pride, topping their opponents 2-1 on a walk-off single from Danielle Zymkowitz at The Ballpark at Rosemont.
Parnaby earned her first victory for Chicago, having joined the club after representing Australia at the World Cup of Softball and the Canada Cup, where the Aussie Spirit finished second behind global softball powerhouse Japan.
After Wiggins took her deep on the second pitch of the game, Parnaby allowed just two more hits in the contest.
Asked how it felt to win her first game for the Bandits, Parnaby said: “It felt amazing.”
“I’ve played with or against all those girls at some stage of my career, so to be able get one back on them, they got one up on me the other night, so to get it back, it was incredible.”
In her National Pro Fastpitch debut in Florida, Parnaby was tagged with the loss in a 3-0 defeat for Chicago against the Pride.
But in her second appearance for the Bandits, even a rain delay that lasted 66 minutes did not affect her.
The Bandits stormed out of the rain delay looking for a walk-off winner as Emily Crane collected a bunt single and moved into scoring position on Megan Blank’s double down the right field line. Pinch-hitting for Kristen Brown, Zymkowitz laced a single up the middle to bring home the winning run.
“It felt good to do whatever my team needed me to do today,” Zymkowitz said. “You know, just show up every single day and just try to do whatever you can to help the team win. That’s what I tried to do today.”
Aiming to continue their two-game win streak, the Bandits will be back in action on Wednesday, Australian time, for a doubleheader against the Scrap Yard Dawgs at The Ballpark at Rosemont.