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Goretti routs Notre Dame in opener

March 24, 2004|by JACK HILL III

The St. Maria Goretti softball team's winless season last year probably seems like a distant memory following Tuesday's season opener.

Sophomore Elena Prieston pitched a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts as the Gaels routed visiting Notre Dame Academy 23-0 in four innings.

"I am really happy that I finally got to pitch a no-hitter," Prieston said. "I just wanted to keep my head in the game and keep my confidence up.

"I think that the team really came out strong today in the first game. I see a big improvement from last year. I was very proud of them. Everybody played well in all areas. I was really happy with my pitching. I was happy that I came out in the first game and pitched strong."

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Prieston only allowed two batters to reach base, hitting one with a pitch in third inning and walking another in the fourth. She struck out everyone else she faced.

"I think that it is going to get her off to a great start," Goretti coach Sandi Michaels said. "She is a good pitcher and this will be a big confidence-builder for her. She was mixing the pitches up extremely well."

Goretti scored 18 runs during the first two innings on only five hits. The Gaels drew 14 walks against Notre Dame starter Laura Brown, who threw 118 pitches during the first two innings.

Stephanie Klipp had three hits for Goretti, while Lauren Barton and Klipp each scored three runs and had two RBI. Erin Haney and Prieston each scored four runs, while Lucy Alencherry had three RBI and two runs and Erin Donoghue had two RBI and two runs.

"I feel absolutely great," Michaels said. "They played an outstanding game. They have come a long way. They definitely deserve this type of game. The enthusiasm level was high today and it showed. I was very impressed with both the hitting and the fielding. They had some excellent hitting and they ran the bases well. They had outstanding fielding positioning."

The Gaels scored eight runs on wild pitches, three runs on passed balls and two runs on a throwing error by the catcher after a dropped third strike.

Alencherry and Barton both hit two-run singles in the second inning, and Donoghue hit a two-run double in the third.

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