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Kaufman no-hits Scottsburg

April 30, 2008
North Harrison junior Jessica Kaufman gunned down the visiting Scottsburg Warriorettes last Tuesday with a no-hitter as the Lady Cats overpowered Scottsburg in a 19-0 rout. Kaufman said she was feeling very confident coming into the contest.

North Harrison's Jessica Kaufman threw a no-hitter and the Lady Cats beat up visiting Scottsburg in a 19-0 rout last Tuesday afternoon. (Photos by Wade Bell)
"Especially after yesterday, because I went to pitching practice and was doing pretty good," she said. "I was feeling good."

"She's tough anyway," North Harrison coach Ron Mitchell said. "I don't think she's had very many hits off of her in any game. She did a good job tonight. She's hungry. She wants to pitch and wants to do the best she can."

Kaufman struck out two of the first three batters, then the Lady Cats had their first big inning at the plate, scoring six runs. Kayla Lambert, Mary Robertson and Kayla Waynescott all reached base safely on three straight Scottsburg errors, with Lambert scoring on the third mistake.

Brooke Auberry singled to score Robertson and Waynescott. Jenna McConnell walked, then Kaufman singled to score McConnell as Scottsburg committed another throwing error. With one out, Ashley Eveslage singled to score courtesy runner Kristin Hoehn for a 6-0 lead.

Kaufman struck out two more as Scottsburg went three-up-and-out. North Harrison scored nine runs in the bottom of the second, as the Lady Cats got eight hits in the inning. Brooke Auberry hit for a double and Kaufman and Waynescott smacked triples for runs as North Harrison took a 15-0 lead.

Kaufman struck out two more in the third, then North Harrison scored another run in the bottom of the inning, McConnell hitting for a double and scoring on a sacrifice bunt by Eveslage after another Scottsburg mistake.

North Harrison senior Jenna McConnell, right, gets in under Scottsburg shortstop Jessi Derrickson to steal second base in the first inning of the Lady Cats' 19-0 Mid-Southern Conference win.
Kaufman then misfired on some pitches, first hitting Jessi Derrickson and walking Jessica Kirby with two outs. Kaufman got out of the inning, however, as Emily Reece grounded out.

"I shouldn't have walked the person and hit the one person in the foot," Kaufman said. "Stuff happens. I try to not let it get to me. I hope it didn't hurt her too bad."

"The inside screwball got her," Mitchell said.

In their last at-bat, the Lady Cats scored three more runs as the Warriorettes began the inning with three straight infield errors to load the bases.

Kaufman then struck out two of her last three batters as North Harrison finished out the 19-0 win.

"We threw a lot of fast balls," said Kaufman, who struck out seven of the 18 batters she faced. "We threw a couple of screw balls and a couple of rise balls."

Mitchell said the junior pitcher was a true competitor.

"We were at South Harrison the other night and I pulled her in the seventh inning and you'd have thought I killed her," Mitchell said. "I want her to keep that hunger, and I think she is. She's really done good this year. Her whole mental attitude and focus has completely turned around from last year. Last year, she'd get a runner on base and just fall apart. This year, she's a lot mentally tougher. She got those runners on base and we still got them out."

North Harrison (11-2) had 12 hits and made no errors. Mitchell was able to put some of his younger players at the plate for some much needed experience. The win improved the Lady Cats' Mid-Southern Conference record to 4-1.

"Some of the younger players still had problems, but the older players, they stayed disciplined at the plate and hit the ball," Mitchell said. "That's what you have to be, focused and swinging at the plate, and they did that."

Scottsburg (1-8) committed nine errors. Kayla Cochran walked three and Reece struck out three from the mound.

Mitchell said a blowout game such as this fails to help his team as much as a much closer contest.

"When you're playing a team like Scottsburg, who looked like they had quite a few young kids, it's not helping you out a whole lot," he said. "They're pitching is a little slower and they're not going to hit the ball as well, so you get kind of complacent out in the field. Your pitcher is doing all the work, and it's not helping you. Nothing against Scottsburg, but it doesn't help you."

"You put it out of your mind, because you can't rely on this for other games to help you out," said Kaufman, who had long waits between times on the mound. "You've just got to go in with a good mental attitude."

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