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Borden no-hits South Central, 12-0

Borden no-hits South Central, 12-0
Borden no-hits South Central, 12-0
South Central shortstop Abby Knear applies a late tag at third to Hailey Hurst of Borden early in last Tuesday night’s sectional game at Lanesville. Photo by Alan Stewart
Alan Stewart, Contributing Writer

Two seasons ago, South Central’s softball program was shut down due to a lack of enough players to field a team. Last year, there were no spring sports due to COVID-19. So, with nowhere to go but up, the 2021 campaign for the Lady Rebels started from scratch and largely used the schedule as a learning experience.

After the final out was made last Tuesday night at the Lanesville Class 1A Sectional in a 12-0 mercy-rule loss to Borden, there weren’t many tears in South Central’s post-game huddle in the outfield. In fact, there were smiles and laughter.

“Basically, our program is starting over,” South head coach Chelsea Thomas said. “All of these girls on my bench have never seen a varsity field. What they accomplished tonight was huge. They showed up, played the game, made outs, they played and they learned and they worked their butts off this season and that’s all I can ask for.

“I have a couple of girls that it doesn’t matter what the score is, they’ll have you in stitches,” she said. “You need a couple of those on your team so when the score does look like it did tonight, you have one of them say, ‘Well so-and-so fell down the stairs’ or whatever, and it’s that laughter and pep that keeps them going and keeps them pushing. They are a great group of girls, and they never cease to surprise me.”

South Central, with its only victory this season against Clarksville, got through the first two innings unscathed before Borden scratched the only run it needed in the top of the third.

Caitlyn Cook singled for the Lady Braves and reached second on an error then came across on the second error of the inning.

After South Central starting pitcher Kendall Kiper held Borden to one-run, two-hit balls through three innings, the Lady Braves finally broke things open as they plated six runs in the fourth and five in the fifth to put the game out of reach.

Borden twirler Emily Schottelkof pitched a no-hitter with 10 strikeouts and was one hit batter away from tossing a perfect game. South Central’s Abby Knear was plunked by a pitch to lead off the bottom of the fourth and stole second but got no farther as the next three batters were retired in order by way of the strikeout.

“When we showed up tonight, our goal was to play and leave it all out on the field and, for the most part, we did that,” Thomas said. “We made errors, but we’ll never learn unless we make those mistakes and learn from them. We thought we could give Borden a run for their money, and, for the first couple of innings, we did.

“My girls will tell you that we always seem to have that one inning that just kicks our butt, and tonight we had one inning where we struggled to get the outs and they scored on us. This time we had back-to-back innings that way,” she said. “I have no seniors, so they all come back next year. They come back with knowledge and will be stronger. We have a large class of freshmen coming up, so we have several girls on the way and, hopefully, our numbers will be bigger and somewhere down the line we can do some damage.”

West Washington went on to edge Borden, 2-1, to advance to the sectional title game against Orleans, which was a 12-2 victor over Christian Academy of Indiana. The Lady Senators shut out Orleans, 10-0, to win the Lanesville Sectional and advanced to the North Daviess Regional to face Henryville. In the other side of the bracket, it’ll be Northeast Dubois versus Loogootee.

Borden                              001  65 – 12  7  0

South Central                   000  00 – 0  0  4

W – Schottelkof. L – Kiper.