Tucker’s no-hitter leads Pam Pack softball to first round win

Published 7:41 pm Thursday, May 10, 2018

WASHINGTON — Abbi Tucker’s masterful display of throwing a no-hitter while striking out 18 Rams helped lead Washington to a 7-0 win over Reidsville on Wednesday night in the first round of the state playoffs.

Tucker, who was two outs away from a perfect game before walking a batter in the top of the seventh, frustrated Reidsville all night. It was a common sight Wednesday to see a Ram trudging back to the dugout, ruefully shaking her head after Tucker left her swinging at air yet again.

The Pam Pack sophomore struck out the first nine batters she faced, until Reidsville’s Sandy Lee managed to make contact. Unfortunately for Lee and the Rams, it was a ground ball straight to Washington first baseman Haylee Simpkins for an easy out.

While the Pam Pack’s pitching was nearly perfect, the same can’t be said for its hitting. Washington managed to score both early and late, but struggled to get much going at the plate in the game’s middle innings. Reidsville pitcher Carly Cobb was responsible for limiting the Pam Pack’s effectiveness swinging a bat. Washington coach Doug Whitehead said the off-speed pitching Cobb used has been a “nemesis” for the Pam Pack this season.

“(Cobb) was very consistent, threw strikes and we were having problems hitting her. Fortunately we had a masterful pitching job tonight by Abbi Tucker,” Whitehead said. “We’ll take a win, don’t care if it’s 1-0. And we could’ve done that tonight with Abbi’s performance.”

Despite not having the best of nights at the plate, Washington opened the scoring in the game’s first inning. Mary B. Dixon began it all by hitting a single and stealing second to get in scoring position. Emme Davis followed by hitting a ball into left field, allowing Dixon to reach home and establish a 1-0 Pam Pack lead. Davis added another RBI in the third, hitting a sacrifice fly, scoring Summer Campbell.

Washington finally found its groove at the plate in the sixth, racking up four of its nine hits in the game and scoring four runs. The highlights of the scoring spree were a Grace Lassiter RBI-triple that opened the scoring and a 2-RBI single from Dixon that closed it out.

Dixon led the way for the Pam Pack at the plate Wednesday. The senior went 2-for-3, scoring two runs, knocking in two RBI and stealing three bases. Summer Campbell and Desiree Maurizzio were the only other Washington players with more than one hit on the night, getting two each.

Up next in the second round of the playoffs for the Pam Pack is a familiar foe in Eastern Randolph, who eliminated Washington from the postseason in the third round last year. This time, the Pam Pack will be the home team, hosting the Wild Cats tonight at 7 p.m.