Moments after her No. 8 Old Mill squad defeated visiting and No. 4 North County, 7-1, yesterday, Patriots coach Debbie Shacklock saw something she had not seen in a while -- smiles and laughter.
"I hadn't heard them laughing in about a week," said Shacklock, whose Patriots (4-3 overall, 4-2 in the county 4A League) improved to 3-1 in the Friendship Division.
Old Mill, which was coming off of a 6-0 loss to defending Class 4A state champion and No. 3 Chesapeake, got a big game from shortstop Christine Baer (2-for-3, four RBI), who hit a first-inning, two-run homer for an early 2-0 lead and a fifth-inning, two-run triple for a 6-1 lead.
In addition, pitcher Jen Schmittle had nine strikeouts, allowing only two hits and one walk. She had a no-hitter going for 4 1/3 innings until giving up a fifth-inning double to Karen Hay for the Knights' only run.
"After yesterday [Tuesday], we were tired of losing, so we just came out with a better attitude," said Schmittle, whose record rose to 2-1. "There wasn't really an accurate strike zone, so I just mixed it up, either fastball or junk."
Hay, the opposing pitcher, gave up seven hits against four strikeouts. The Knights' defense committed three errors only a day after a 19-0, perfect-game victory over Randallstown on Tuesday in which Hay, the starter, combined with teammate Kristie Reinhardt.