Last week, O’Fallon pitcher Katie Moore had the week of her dreams.
The Panthers sophomore held conference rival Belleville East without a run and allowed only five hits in her first varsity start last Tuesday.
Two days later, she struck out nine East St. Louis batters in a five-inning no-hitter. Moore was a hit batter short of being perfect.
Moore said she had no idea she had a no-hitter until her teammates congratulated her after the game.
But Moore quickly gave all the credit for her accomplishment to her teammates, who played solid defense behind her.
Moore only broke into the Panthers’ starting pitching rotation after their ace, Addison Barnouski suffered a back injury.
With Barnouski’s future high school pitching career in doubt, the Panthers will be relying on Moore to pick up where Barnouski left off. She said Barnouski is now cheering for her at games. She has also been helping Moore, offering her words of encouragement.
But Moore is confident she can fill Barnouski’s shoes.
“I just have to step up and do it,” said Katie, the daughter of Tom and Bev Moore.
She is more than stepping up and doing it.
Take her latest outgoing against East St. Louis, for instance.
This, however, might be the second no-hitter Moore tossed in her 10-year softball career. She recalls throwing another no-hitter while she was in seventh grade.
But this was her first-ever no-hitter she recorded in high school.
It, however, might the first of many to come for Moore whose screwball continues to baffle her opponents.
She credits her success on the softball field to her parents, who have driven to her a number of practices and games during her young career, and to her coaches.
She also praises her older sister, Maggie Moore, who just finished her sophomore at Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey. Katie and Maggie having friendly rivalry with each other.
But Katie said Maggie, who earlier pitched a no-hitter with the Panthers, is always there for her when she needs words of encouragement.
Katie credits all of her success to her O’Fallon teammates, who she trusts in the field and to come up with clutch hits at the plate.
In the meantime, Katie continues to work hard to hone her skills.
“I’m hoping to help our club get more win,” she says and smiles.
Mark Hodapp: 618-239-2688