Regular Season Champion Chicago Bandits Well-Decorated After Trip to 2019 NPF Awards
After a league-leading 2019 season by the Chicago Bandits, it’s no surprise that they walked away well-decorated from the NPF awards on Wednesday night.
The Bandits have been a force to be reckoned with all season, managing to string together at least 14 wins in a row on two separate occasions. This wouldn’t be possible without the efforts of the newly awarded 2019 Coaching Staff of the Year made up of head coach Lauren Lappin, and assistant coaches Amber Flores and Lance McMahon.
Chicago clinched the regular season title the week before following a five-inning win against the Beijing Eagles. They posted a record of 38-7, only losing two games at their home stadium of Parkway Bank Sports Complex.
In an impressive showing, the Bandits nearly swept the positions for the All-NPF team. Among the winners were Rachele Fico, Aleshia Ocasio, Amanda Chidester, Abby Ramirez, Hannah Flippen, Abbey Cheek and Gwen Svekis. Cheek, Fico, and Svekis were named to All-NPF at large, while their teammates were selected for their specific positions.
The awards didn’t stop there for Chidester; after boasting a .374 batting average, 15 home runs and 35 RBI, she earned the Home Run Champion title, Offensive Player of the Year, and 2019 NPF Player of the Year award. She also finished first in the league in slugging percentage (.814), and second in the league in batting average, a mere .004 under teammate Abbey Cheek.
Cheek walked away with multiple awards as well, earning 2019 Rookie of the Year with a .378 batting average, 28 RBI, a slugging percentage of .664, and an OBP of .442.
Tonight they look to put the efforts that earned those awards to good use in game two of the Championship Series against the USSSA Pride. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
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.