Watson’s 17th no-hitter stops Eagles

Published 5:10 pm Friday, April 24, 2009

By By GREG KATSKI, Staff Writer
The Pam Pack softball team finally found their stroke against West Craven, beating the Eagles 9-0 on Thursday night behind a barrage of hits.
Leadoff hitter Kristi Wood set the table for Washington in the bottom of the first when she singled up the middle, stole second on the next pitch and scored on a Hayley Stowe line drive single.
Stowe advanced to second on the play as West Craven tried to get the speedy Wood out at home. Lily Ann Arnold followed with a grounder, moving Stowe to third, and cleanup hitter Charity Watson drove Stowe in on another grounder.
The 2-0 lead after one was all the offense star pitcher Watson would need.
After hitting Eagles cleanup hitter Melinda Spillers with a pitch, Watson redeemed herself by striking out the side in the top of the second. For the game, Watson had 16 strikeouts, walked one and had one hit by a pitch. She threw a no-hitter for the 17th time in her illustrious Pam Pack career.
Watson said the early lead certainly helped her psyche.
Pam Pack head coach Doug Whitehead said he took his girls back to the basics of hitting at practice Wednesday, and the work paid immediate dividends.
The Pam Pack continued to hit against Eagles starting pitcher Holly Harrison.
After Watson struck out the side in the top of the third, Wood and Stowe got things going again in the bottom half.
With one out, Wood hit a single, stole second and scored on a Stowe double lifted well over the head of the West Craven left fielder.
Stowe scored on another Arnold grounder, putting the game at 4-0 in favor of the Pam Pack.
The potent 1-2 punch of Wood and Stowe gave the credit to their coaches for the breakout game.
The feisty Wood, who went 3-for-3 with two singles, a double, three runs, three stolen bases and an RBI, said she came to the park ready to hit.
The Pam Pack got it going again in the bottom of the fourth.
Brittany Bryant led off with a single, moved to third when Morgan Bryant was safe at first on a throwing error and scored on a bloop single by Brittany Moss.
After Stacey Mayer grounded into a fielder’s choice, forcing Morgan out at third, Wood laced a RBI double. Stowe followed with a fielder’s choice grounder, scoring Mayer and putting the Pam Pack ahead 6-0.
Washington would tack on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 9-0.
The Pam Pack’s next offensive test is Tuesday against J.H. Rose.
Watson knows how much of a challenge the Rampants will be, but is excited about playing J.H. Rose at home.