SHOREVIEW — Hannah Heacox delivered a dominating performance in a complete game one-hitter as Stillwater blanked Mounds View 6-0 in Wednesday’s Suburban East Conference softball game at Rice Creek Park.
The senior struck out 15 and did not allow a walk while keeping Stillwater’s slim conference title hopes alive. Ashley Linn spoiled Heacox’s no-hit bid with an infield single with one out in the seventh inning. That lone hit only made Heacox more determined as she struck out the next two batters to finish the game and complete a pitching performance that is even more impressive when you consider the Mustangs scored a combined 55 runs in four straight victories coming into Wednesday’s contest.
“She just gets in a groove and she was really locating her pitches well,” Ponies coach Bob Beedle said. “She had total command of this softball game.”
With one game remaining, the Ponies (14-3 SEC, 14-3), who have won eight of their last nine games, remain one game behind Forest Lake (14-2) in the standings. The Rangers host Woodbury, which handed Stillwater one of its three losses this season, in a doubleheader tonight and Stillwater will need the Royals to win at least one of those to have an opportunity to earn a share of the title.
Stillwater scored four times in the second to take control, an inning that began with a double by Sidnee Ronsberg. Natalie Gerber followed with an RBI double and Allison Pasiuk drew a walk before Lauren Jordan reached on a throwing error after a sacrifice bunt attempt that allowed Gerber to score. Carlie Hart singled home Pasiuk and Jordan scored on a sacrifice fly by Haley Balzart for a 4-0 lead, which was far more than necessary for Heacox.
The Ponies finished with 10 hits and did not have a strikeout the entire game.
“I know it hasn’t happened this year and I can’t remember that happening in the past several seasons where we have had a game without a strikeout (at the plate),” Beedle said.
Stillwater added a run in the third on a solo home run by Rachel Hartwig — her fifth of the season.
Natalie Ingram delivered an RBI single in the seventh as Stillwater extended its lead to 6-0.
Stillwater 0 4 1 0 0 0 1 — 6 10 2
Mounds View 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 1 1
WP: Hannah Heacox 7-ip, 1-h, 0-r, 0-er, 0-bb, 15-so
LP: Carissa Struve 4 1/3-ip, 6-h, 5-r, 4-er, 2-bb, 0-so
Leading hitters: St, Hart 2×4 (RBI), Heacox 1×4, Hartwig 2×4 (HR, RBI), Ingram 1×4 (RBI), Ronsberg 2×3 (2B), Gerber 1×3 (RBI), Pasiuk 1×2; MV, Ashley Linn 1×3.