Jun. 1—In no way, shape for form did Raylee Roby and the Daviess County High School softball team take Owensboro lightly on a made-to-order Memorial Day Monday.
Instead, Roby hurled a 15-up, 15-down five-inning perfect game and the No. 1 seed Lady Panthers cruised past the No. 4 seed Lady Devils 12-0 in the first round of the 9th District Tournament at Owensboro Catholic’s Parents Park.
DC improved to 27-6 and will take on host and No. 2 seed Owensboro Catholic (20-12) at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday for the title.
“We were really focused, really locked in today,” Daviess County coach John Biggs said. “Our team is focused on becoming better every day, and I thought that showed today — all our players were engaged and ready to go.
“For the past two or three weeks we’ve emphasized being patient at the plate, and we did a nice job of that in this one — it allowed for us to turn our lineup over quickly, and that’s always a good thing. We got contributions from a a lot of spots in the order.”
Indeed, the Lady Panthers sent all nine starters to the plate in the first inning, on the way to five runs — Seaha Leibfried clubbed a two-run double, Jessie Daniels and Katie Mewes each had RBI doubles, and Kelsea Roby delivered a run-scoring single.
DC pushed its lead to 6-0 in the second, getting a long home run to left field from Hattie Newman, and Abby Newman stroked an RBI single in the third to make it 7-0.
The Lady Panthers put the game away with a five-run fourth inning. Highlighting the frame were RBI singles from Daniels and Newman, and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Sophie Simone.
All the while, Roby — a hard-throwing sophomore right-hander — was mowing one Lady Devil down after another, finishing her masterpiece with nine strikeouts.
“Pretty much everything was working pretty well today,” Roby said. “I was a little nervous at the start, but I settled into it. I knew our defense would be solid behind me, and it’s always good when your team’s offense comes out and scores early like we did in this one.
“My screwball and rise ball were working particularly well for me in this game.”
Leading Daviess County’s 15-hit attack were Abby Newman, Hattie Newman, Millie Roberts, Daniels, Leibfried and Mewes, each of whom finished with two hits. Abby Newman, Daniels and Leibfried each had two RBIs.
“Hey, that’s a solid team over there, there’s no secret about that,” OHS coach Quincy Moorman said of Daviess County. “From top to bottom in the order they are one of the strongest teams in the entire state
“I told our team we have nothing to hang our heads about. We just need to go back to work and get better in preparation for next season.”
Owensboro closed out its season at 8-19.
OWENSBORO 00 00 — 0 0 2
DAVIESS COUNTY 511 5x — 12 15 0
WP-Roby. LP-Keller. 2B-H. Newman, Daniels, Leibfried, Mewes (DC). HR-H. Newman (DC).