Although the weather was near perfect on Friday night at the Washington Sports Complex, so was South Knox (8-4) softball hurler Jianna Hughes.
In fact, Hughes was perfect until the fifth when she finally walked a batter to break up her perfect game and just ending with a no-hitter. Only three Hatchets reached in seven innings on a pair of walks and an error in the 8-0 loss in seven innings. She struck out 16 of the 24 batters she faced.
“It’s hard to face pitchers that are slower than that, then face somebody that is that hard and really good. She did a very good job tonight,” said WHS coach Lexi Lemon. “A game like that helps us get ready for some of the pitching we will see. Monday we played NE Dubois, and then we play Pike Central on Tuesday, so this kind of helped get you ready for that next type of pitching.
Both pitchers worked quickly in the first inning. Kaitlin Hill was helped by a nice double play, while South Knox’s Hughes picked up a pair of Ks.
South Knox was a little more aggressive to open the second getting three straight singles, however Hill was able to bear down and strike out the next three, but a dropped third strike led to two runs scored, followed by a single scoring two more and making it 4-0.
Hill got a fourth strikeout to end the inning, but then it was Hughes’ turn, who struck out the side making for a quick bottom of the second.
SK opened with a pair of bases hits again in the third and again Hill was helped by a double play, as Kiara Welsh made a diving catch, followed by a throw to first to complete the twin killing.
South Knox broke things open in the top of the fourth. Although Hill only gave up one long ball to the gap, an error and some indecision in the infield, led to four runs and an 8-0 lead, but WHS was able to get SK to strand two runners.
SK did add a single top of the fifth, but Hughes continued to have the Hatchets’ number striking out 10 of the first 16 batters she faced.
However, in the end it was all South Knox in the 8-0 win.
WHS travels to Tell City on Saturday for a conference game.