With her first start on the mound, of her career, freshman Morgan Gabbard made the most of her opportunity.
Gabbard threw 12 strikeouts while giving up zero hits in a 15-0, five-inning run-rule victory against visiting Crothersville on Tuesday.
“(Gabbard) did a great job for her first start — throwing a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts,” Cougars coach Chad Goecker said. “That’s what we want to do: give her a great confidence booster. Mainly she was hitting her spots with her fastball.”
The Cougars also found massive success at the plate, amassing nine hits, which was highlighted by a triple and home run from senior Natalie Plofkin.
In the top of the first inning, Gabbard managed three strikeouts and two walks to hold the Tigers scoreless.
Following two outs, Plofkin tripled to get on base in the bottom of the first. Fellow-senior Kaitlyn Wright followed with an RBI single before junior Sabrina Vierling chipped a ball to center field to score a 2 RBI single, putting the Cougars up 4-0.
Gabbard retired three-straight Tigers batters following a walk in the second inning.
With two runners on first and third base, Plofkin hit a home run over the center field fence to give the Cougars a 7-0 margin.
After a walked-in run, Gabbard hit an RBI single. An RBI single from sophomore Taylor Russell gave the Cougars a 10-0 lead after two innings.
The Cougars extended their lead in the bottom with fourth inning scoring four-straight walked-runs prior to an RBI Single from sophomore Kirsten Hoene, which finalized the Cougars’ scoring.
“The were just staying relaxed,” Goecker said. “We had some timely hits. We came out and did what we were supposed to do. They did their job, (Gabbard) pitched well, we had girls with good hits. We did what we were supposed to and played well.”
With the victory, the Cougars remain undefeated at 4-0.
The Tigers, who were playing their first game of the season, took a lot away from their opener.
“They were nervous the first couple of innings,” Tigers coach Hope McMannamy said. “That’s when most of the runs were scored. There towards the end you could see the confidence going up. They realized that this is what we do ever day, and hopefully we carry that forward.”
Farmer was the losing pitcher for the Tigers with three strikeouts and 11 walks.
“We ended up having 55 to 60 pitches on our pitcher, that’s a long night for her,” McMannamy said. “I didn’t’ really see sense in changing for two or three batters.”