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Lowary, Fico invited to Team USA’s International Cup selection pool

ROSEMONT — The Chicago Bandits have agreed to loan USA Softball a pair of pitchers as part of the International Cup selection pool.

First-year southpaw Paige Lowary, whom the Bandits selected No. 1 overall in the 2018 NPF Draft, along with veteran right-hander Rachele Fico, will join Team USA’s pool of available players for the national team event.

The International Cup, which is set to take place July 9-15 in Irvine, California, will feature a plethora of talent from the United States, Japan, China and Canada, among other nations.

“(Director of national teams) Chris Sebren reached out to me regarding the possibility of borrowing Paige and Rachele for the International Cup,” Bandits general manager Toni Calmeyn said.

“It is clear USA Softball has its eye on the Bandits and the wide selection of elite athletes across the NPF. We provided our explicit permission to USA Softball and are proud to supply the national team with two talented pitchers.”

Lowary, a 2017 national champion at Oklahoma, has made an immediate impact out of the bullpen for the Bandits. The Dallas Center, Iowa, product holds a 2-1 record in her rookie season and her 12.79 strikeouts per game rate is the top mark in the league by a significant margin.

Fico, who holds a comparable 2-1 mark and 1.29 ERA, made her Bandits debut June 17 against the Beijing Shougang Eagles. The former Akron Racers standout continued her early-season success with a recent two-hit performance across six innings Tuesday against the league-leading USSSA Pride.

“Paige and Rachele have been nothing short of stellar to start the 2018 season and we look forward to seeing them earn their spots and compete for a brief stint at the international level,” Calmeyn said.

The Bandits will be back in action at 7:35 p.m. Friday as they begin a three-game series against the Pride at Parkway Bank Sports Complex. All three games will be broadcast live at no cost via NPFTV.

For more information about the Chicago Bandits or to purchase tickets to any remaining home game during the 2018 season, please visit chicagobandits.com or call the box office at 877-722-6348.

ABOUT CHICAGO BANDITS

Since 2005, the Chicago Bandits have been members of the National Pro Fastpitch league. Entering their 14th season as a franchise, the Bandits have provided the Chicago area with high-level softball talent and entertainment en route to capturing six regular season titles and four Cowles Cup championships, the most recent coming during the 2016 campaign. Located in Rosemont, the Bandits play at Parkway Bank Sports Complex, one of the premier softball facilities in the nation. Parkway Bank Sports Complex is the only stadium in the country built exclusively for a women’s professional softball team. The Bandits provide an opportunity for female fastpitch softball players to further their careers at the professional level and has included legendary figures such as Jennie Finch, Tammy Williams and Stacy May-Johnson.

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