Kingsport Times-News: Battle's Hill no-hits Union in 5-inning Mountain 7 win
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Battle's Hill no-hits Union in 5-inning Mountain 7 win

Kevin Mays • Apr 17, 2019 at 12:57 AM

BIG STONE GAP — John Battle pitcher Madison Hill had no idea she had a no-hitter going until after Tuesday’s game. She struck out the side in the bottom of the fifth, just in case.

The junior fanned seven batters in all, allowing baserunners only on a pair of walks and a John Battle error, in an 11-0 Mountain 7 District softball win over Union.

“I didn’t know that I had a no-hitter,” Hill said. “I was kind of focused on winning every pitch, strike them out or at least try to.”

Battle (8-2, 5-0) impressed offensively as well. Seven players had at least one base knock and the Lady Trojans counted a fifth-inning grand slam by Logan Leonard among its 12 hits.

“We’ve been working really hard,” said Leonard, who finished 2-for-3 with the four RBIs. “It feels good.”

Haylee Dye also homered for Battle, a two-run shot in the second. Hannah Reynolds went 3-for-3 with two RBIs, Peyton Crowder tripled and Emma Harmon had an RBI single. Hill helped her cause by going 2-for-3 and scoring three runs.

GOOD WAY TO COME BACK

The game was Battle’s first following a 1-2 weekend against tough competition in a tournament in Kentucky. First-year Lady Trojans coach Hannah Cress’ team had opened the season with seven straight wins.

“We played some pretty tough teams and we did that for a reason,” Cress said. “We came back with one win and two losses and this is what I wanted to see from my kids. I wanted to see them bounce back in a district game and hit the ball and pitch well. And we just put it all together tonight and I’m very pleased with their performance.

“That’s why we went over there and played such tough teams. I wanted to see how they would handle adversity and they’ve handled it very well. We’ve come back and we’ve refocused. We’ve focused on what’s most important throughout the year and (district games) are what matter the most and we handled it well.”

TOUGH LOSS FOR UNION

Brooke Light drew a two-out walk in the first inning, but the Lady Bears’ only other threat came in the second. Kaylee Neece drew a one-out walk and Zoe Brooks reached on Battle’s only error.

Hill retired the next 11 batters in order to close out Union (6-4, 4-1).

“I don’t think we were focused from the start,” said Lady Bears coach McKenzie Cluesman. “They came ready to play and we didn’t. I think we came out here and we fought, but when you have more errors than hits, it’s hard to win a ballgame.”

UP NEXT

Both teams are scheduled to be back in district action Thursday. Battle travels to Abingdon and Union goes to Ridgeview, the other team still unbeaten in Mountain 7 play.

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