Senior pitcher Kristie Hurman doesn't have to be the star for Chesapeake's good-hitting team to win. But that was exactly what she was in yesterday's Maryland 4A semifinal softball game against Eleanor Roosevelt.
Hurman, who had spent most of the past three seasons on the bench, tossed a no-hitter with nine strikeouts and one walk to lead the Cougars to an 8-0 victory over Eleanor Roosevelt at Randazzo Park in Severn. It gave Chesapeake (21-4) its first spot in the state title game in 11 years.
Chesapeake will face Westminster (22-0) in Friday's 8 p.m. final at the University of Maryland. Westminster came from behind to defeat Watkins Mill, 2-1, in eight innings in yesterday's other semifinal. Both games were originally scheduled for Tuesday night, but postponed by rain.
Hurman has 179 strikeouts in 1462/3 innings this season and entered the game with a 1.15 ERA.
"It's not about a perfect game or a no-hitter," the right-hander said. "It's about winning. I wanted so much for my teammates to get to the championship."
Hurman kept Eleanor Roosevelt off balance with a superb change-up that she mixed in with a strong rise ball.
Chesapeake erupted for six runs in the third, including a two-run triple by Meghan Hickman. Hickman finished with four RBI, while senior shortstop Tracey Dahlen, sisters Brooke and Brittany Owen and outfielder Emily Bolling added one each.
In the other game, Watkins Mill (18-2) fell short of its first state final in eight years in spite of a stellar performance by senior pitcher Rachel Jacobs.
The Wolverines took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth after a RBI single by Kathleen Niffenegger. But Owls designated hitter Stacy Noland blasted a double into left-center field and moved to third on an error on the relay in the seventh. She scored on a bloop to left by third baseman Niky Wetzelberger to tie the game.
In the top of the eighth, Westminster's Alexa Ashwell started on second base as part of the international tiebreaker and moved to third on a groundout. Ashwell then scored on a squeeze bunt by Stacy Davis.
In the bottom of the eighth, Watkins Mill leadoff hitter Jenni Rench moved Paula Hand to third on a groundout. But Jacobs hit a hard line drive to shortstop and the game ended on a pop fly to short.
Jacobs tossed a one-hitter, striking out 13 with two walks.
"They got the little bloop hits at the right time," said Jacobs, who nearly matched her season-high in strikeouts (14). "It was nice to be back here. We were really ready for it."