Senior pitcher Leah Hunt contributed a superb, two-hit pitching performance and also rapped two hits that drove in two teammates in the Londonderry High softball team’s 13-0, season-opening victory over Manchester Memorial at LHS this past Monday, April 14.
It would be hard to imagine a better way in which veteran coach Wayne MacDougall’s Lady Lancers could have gotten their 2014 season under way. The hosts pounded their way out to a 7-0 lead and batted around in the bottom half of the first inning, and Hunt didn’t allow even a single Memorial Lady Crusader on base until the top half of the fifth as Londonderry was working to put the final touches on its 10-run-rule victory.
Memorial ended the LHS lefty pitcher’s hunt for a perfect game when its leadoff batter in the top of the fifth – third baseman Lejla Kosic – smacked a solid double. The next Lady Crusader up was Kayla Johonnett, and she knocked a single, but the Queen City team didn’t plate a run and the Lady Lancers’ shutout stood up.
“Memorial isn’t where a lot of the other teams are, but we have to play the teams that are on our schedule, and this was a great way for us to start,” said MacDougall.
Every one of the host team’s starters reached base at least once, and the Lady Lancers’ offense looked potent in smacking out 15 hits and plating those 13 runs.
After putting the Lady Crusaders out in order in the top half of the first inning, the Londonderry bunch scored more than half of its runs in the bottom half of that frame.
The team mashed out seven hits and scored seven runs on those hits and two Memorial errors. Shannon Crowley drove in two runs with a double, and Hunt, Melissa Sprague, and Lauren Reinhold each lashed RBI singles.
The Lady Lancers scored another run on two hits in the bottom of the second, four more runs in the latter half of the third on four more safeties, and a single marker on two more hits in the bottom of the fourth to build up their 13-0 advantage.
And while their offense was humbling the Memorial defense and hurler, pitcher Hunt was building up a tally of seven strikeouts and completely blanking the rival hitters.
Crowley finished with three hits and three runs batted in, and Cassidy Litch, Brooke Tulley, and Sprague joined Hunt in the two-hit club.
And Londonderry also got the chance to savor the fact that Tulley and leadoff-hitter Summer Vose were able to overcome recent injuries to play – and play well – in the season-opener.