AKRON, OH – The highly skilled designated player position was never more on display, at its best, then when the latest IMPACT honoree Oli Keohohou was in Akron. Oli’s critical contribution with the Racers was, indeed, significant in defining this very important role in the Akron lineup.
“The designated player is asked to enter the game offensively, but yet be prepared at any time to enter defensively,” explained GM Joey Arrietta. “Oli was able to remain focused and in the game at all times. For Akron, Oli defined the position in a manner that has become standard practice 15 seasons later.”
Keohohou, the Long Beach State University grad, was drafted by the Akron Racers in the fourth round of the 2005 senior draft. In her first season, Keohohou had a sensational year, she had 20 runs, 34 hits, five doubles, six home runs and 34 RBI. Keohohou had .327 batting average and was fifth on the team with .548 slugging percentage. The power and run production boost Keohohou gave the Racers helped Akron secure the 2005 Cowles Cup Championship.
After Akron fell into a 4-0 hole early against the Chicago Bandits in the championship game, Keohohou sparked a critical rally in the top of the fifth inning. With two runners on, Keohohou smacked a double to the outfield fence that scored Kristin Johnson for the Racers first run of the game. Later in the inning, Keohohou scored to cut Chicago’s lead to 4-3, setting up the opportunity for some late game heroics.
Following an extraordinary first season, Keohohou didn’t disappoint in her second season. Throughout 2006, Keohohou scored 12 runs, with 39 hits, including five doubles, eight home runs and 28 RBI. Keohohou was third on the team with .320 batting average, was first on the team with .557 slugging percentage and she was named to the All-NPF Team.
In her two-year career with the Racers, Keohohou left her name in Akron’s record book, the designated player is fourth among Akron hitters all-time with a .553 slugging percentage and fifth all-time with a .438 on-base percentage. Throughout her career, Keohohou recorded a .323 batting average on 73 hits, which ranks eighth all-time. She is also eighth in home runs with 14. Keohohou’s 62 career RBI is good enough for ninth place and her 10 doubles is tied for 15th among Akron hitters.
Keohohou and the other 29 IMPACT honorees will be recognized this summer, culminating in a weekend-long celebration July 15-17 when the Racers welcome the Dallas Charge to Firestone Stadium for a three-game series. The Racers will welcome back many of their former players to celebrate the history of the franchise, culminating in the pre-game presentation of the 30 IMPACT honorees on July 16th. Each honoree will receive a special commemorative jersey bearing their name and number.
2016 Akron Racers IMPACT Honorees (to date)
1. Carla Brookbank-Schaal 9. Radara McHugh
2. Crystl Bustos 10. Iyhia McMichael
3. Amy Kyler 11. Nicole Trimboli
4. Sarah Dawson 12. Brandee McArthur
5. Nicole Odom Reis 13. Jenny Topping
6. Tobin Echo-Hawk 14. Oli Keohohou
7. Kellyn Tate
8. Kristin Johnson
About the Akron Racers: The Akron Racers, headquartered in Akron, OH, are the oldest existing team in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league, celebrating their 15th Season of Play in 2016. The Racers competed in the Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL) for two seasons in 1999 and 2000 and in the NPF since 2004. Historic Firestone Stadium is home to the Racers and numerous amateur events at all levels of play.
About National Pro Fastpitch: National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fast pitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL). NPF is the official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women’s fast pitch softball since 2002. www.profastpitch.com.