Kreis' change of pace stops Long Reach

She throws one-hitter in 5-0 win for Mt. Hebron

Softball

High Schools

April 16, 2004|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

An eight-day layoff did not seem to bother Mount Hebron pitcher Karen Kreis one bit.

Kreis, a senior right-hander, surrendered just one hit and struck out five to propel the visiting Vikings to a 5-0 shutout of Long Reach yesterday.

Kreis, who improved to 4-1, faced the minimum 21 batters and would have walked away with her first perfect game if Long Reach junior second baseman Allison Fleming had not laced a single to center field in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Kreis, however, was nonchalant about the missed opportunity.

"It doesn't really matter," she said. "I guess [a perfect game is] my goal every time I go out there, but if I don't do it and we still win, then it's no big deal."

Kreis said part of her success yesterday came after she and junior catcher Robyn Jackson recognized that the umpire had a high strike zone.

So the battery mates dumped Kreis' low pitches in favor of a steady diet of high fastballs mixed in with a few changeups.

Jackson said Kreis kept the Long Reach batters off balance with her velocity.

"Her speed was on," Jackson said. "It didn't seem like they could catch up. She was doing everything right today."

Kreis also helped the Vikings (5-1 overall and 4-1 in the county) with the bat, going 2-for-4 with an RBI in the first inning.

Mount Hebron coach Sal Milio graded the team's performance as a three on a scale of 1 to 10.

"We're just not getting quality swings at the ball," he said. "We have to attack the ball, but we're not doing that."

While Long Reach coach Chuck Struhar said he expected the bats to suffer in the team's first game since March 31, he pointed out that the Lightning (3-2 overall and county) allowed the Vikings' first batter to reach base in five of seven innings.

"We didn't do a very good job of keeping the first batter off," said Struhar. "When you do that, you're going to lose. This is a very simple game. ... We've got to go back to basics."

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