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Journalists Overpower Members in Women’s Softball Game

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call
From left: Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Rep. Donna Edwards and Rep. Laura Richardson give high fives as the Member's team is introduced at the Congressional Women's Softball Game, featuring Congress vs. the media in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday.

The female members of the Capitol Hill press corps earned a year’s worth of bragging rights Wednesday night at the fourth annual Congressional Women’s Softball Game, beating the female Members of Congress 13-10 in a nail-biter of a game.

Fresh off their painful 5-4 loss from last year, the journalists, who named themselves the Bad News Babes, survived a late-game rally by the Members of Congress, who scored nine of their 10 runs in the last two innings of the game. The press corps now leads the annual series 2-1 in games played.

Roll Call’s own Abby Livingston was named the MVP of the Bad News Babes after stepping up to the mound in the fifth to help end the inning after a series of walks that led to five runs by the Members of Congress.

“We had a big enough lead. I knew it was a big enough lead to walk some people, and I knew not to get frustrated ... but my team backed me up,” Livingston said of the fifth-inning pressure. “[ABC News’] Amy Walter was there to support me, and I just knew if I got that ball into play, we could get them out, and that’s exactly what we did.”

On the Members’ side, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), a Senate co-captain, was named the offensive MVP for her pitching skills. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) was named defensive MVP, and Rep. Jean Schmidt (R-Ohio) was named the team’s overall MVP.

In the early innings, the Bad News Babes shined on both offense and defense — a scenario that helped them pull ahead 6-1 by the fourth inning. Many on the press team blamed their loss last year on weak batting. That was not a problem Wednesday night, with much of the team showing the results from their many weekends spent at the batting cages. Still, both teams suffered from bad pitching, with both scoring runs on walks.

Launched in 2009 by Reps. Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.) and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), the game raises money for the Young Survival Coalition, a nonprofit that aims to support young women battling breast cancer.

Wasserman Schultz, a House co-captain and a breast cancer survivor, said that despite the loss, the game was a success, drawing roughly 900 spectators and raising roughly $50,000 for the YSC.

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