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No-No: Ponies shut down Browning

Havre's Alex Barkus throws a no-hitter in Blue Ponies' home debut

 

April 14, 2017

Colin Thompson

Havre's Alex Barkus hurls a pitch toward home during the Blue Ponies' win over Browning Thursday at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field. Barkus threw a no-hitter as the Ponies won 16-0.

It's always nice in any sport to win the first home game of the season. However, when the victory includes a dominant performance, it makes it that much sweeter.

And for the Havre High softball team, it doesn't get much better than the 16-0 win it scored over Browning Thursday at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field. Making it even more memorable was the gem pitched by Alex Barkus, who no-hit the Indians in five innings to get the win. She also struck out 12 of the 16 batters she faced.

"Wow, I didn't know that," Barkus said. "That's pretty cool."

Barkus' no-hitter, which ended up one error short of a perfect game, was the cherry on top of a 16-run win that puts the Blue Ponies at 1-1 overall this season and 1-1 in the Central A conference.

"It feels pretty good," Barkus said of the win. "We lost a lot of infielders from last year's team and we didn't really know how good we were going to be, so it gave us a reward for working so hard."

Barkus, who showed tremendous command through the game, allowed just one base runner and didn't walk anyone. Havre also didn't allow any Browning player to reach second base. She was perfect into the fourth inning and struck out the side in the top of the fifth to wrap up the win and her no hitter.

"(Alex) has been working really hard all throughout the winter and she is really hitting her spots," HHS head coach Whitney McNally said. "And that's really what we are looking for right now is that consistency and she is getting there."

The Ponies got things going right from the start offensively, plating five runs in the bottom of the first inning as Jacey McDonald and Sam Oliver both singled in runs to help HHS build a 5-0 advantage.

After holding Browning scoreless again in the top of the second, McDonald and Oliver were back it. McDonald doubled in a run and Oliver brought another home off a sacrifice. The Ponies tacked on three more runs in the inning to make it 10-0 after two.

In the bottom of the third, Janae Boles, who was 3 of 4 for the day, scored Madi Shennum on a sacrifice to make it 11-0, then notched an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth. Savannah Dawson added an RBI single of her own later that inning as Havre extended its lead to 16-0.

"I felt good about it," McNally said when asked of her team's offensive effort. "They are improving and that's always nice. They stay positive and it's sometimes hard to get going in a little slower game, but they were having fun and I think that's a big part of it."

Leading the way for the Ponies at the plate were McDonald and Boles, who each finished with three hits. Barkus, Tracyn LaBuda, Oliver, Camryn Huston, Kate Compton and Dawson all added one hit. Nicole Parsons also reached base three times.

Additionally, McDonald led the team in the runs scored with three, followed by Parsons, LaBuda, Oliver and Dawson, who each scored twice. Boles, Oliver and McDonald all had a team-high two RBIs, while Dawson contributed with the other. Browning allowed eight unearned runs in all.

Havre (1-1) will play Sidney and Shepherd at the Lewistown Invitational today, before hosting Lewistown at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field at approximately 5 p.m.

Colin Thompson

Havre High's Jacey McDonald smacks a ball during the Ponies' win over Browning Thursday at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field.

Havre 16, Browning 0

Browning 000 00 - 00

Havre 551 5x - 16 12

WP - Alex Barkus

Havre - Nicole Parsons 1-2, Jane Boles, 3-4, Alex Barkus 1-4, Jacey McDonald 3-4, Trayn LaBuda 1-1, Sam Oliver 1-2, Camryn Huston 1-3, Kate Compton 1-2, Lauren Kato 0-1, Madi Shennum 0-1, Savannah Dawson 0-1.

Browning - M. Bremner 0-2, C. Still Smoking 0-2, J. Gallineaux 0-2, A. Skunkcap 0-1, T. Kennedy 0-1, Becca Padgett 0-1, L. Bremner 0-1, H. Salweu 0-1, A. Bitsui 0-1, S. Osborne 0-1, L. Goss 0-1, T. Rides At Dawm 0-2.

 

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