By ALAN HOSKINS
KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- Sweeping a four-game non-conference series over the weekend highlighted by a no-hit pitching performance by Leslie Ford, Kansas City Kansas Community College returns to Jayhawk Conference play with four doubleheaders in five days.
Weather permitting, the Lady Blue Devils will host Fort Scott Tuesday and Barton County Wednesday and then play at Cowley Friday and Independence Saturday. All four twin bills will have 2 and 4 p.m. starts.
The Blue Devils got big hits at the most opportune times in defeating Maple Woods 5-0 and 4-3 Friday before routing a club team from the University of Kansas 8-0 and 11-3 Saturday. The sweep improved the Blue Devils overall record to 16-6.
Ford got two wins and a save in the four games. After blanking Maple Woods 5-0 in Friday’s opener, Ford got the save with one inning of one-hit relief in the 4-3 nightcap, then came back with a 5-inning no-hitter over KU in Saturday’s 8-0 opening win. She struck out six and had a perfect game until walking the leadoff hitter in the fifth.
Ford also delivered one of the two biggest hits in the 5-0 win over Maple Woods, a two-run double following singles by Amanda Holroyd and Hanna Barnhart in the second inning. The other big hit came in the fourth, a two-out bases-loaded triple by Justice Scales after a single by Laura Vanderheiden and two errors had loaded the bases. Scales and Barnhart each had two hits in the win.
Vanderheiden and Ashley Henington delivered the big blows in the 4-3 nightcap win. Vanderheiden lashed a 3-run triple run in the second after KCKCC had loaded the bases on three walks. Maple Woods had taken a 2-0 lead, scoring runs in each of the first two innings and then tying the game on a double and two singles in the third.
Henington provided her own support for the pitching win by breaking the 3-3 tie with a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the sixth. Henington gave up one hit and struck out one in two innings in relief of starter Elizabeth Seimears.
The Blue Devils lashed out 10 hits in the 8-0 win over KU. Holroyd led with three singles while Lacey Santiago added two hits. Mierra Morisette’s 2-run triple following a leadoff single by Santiago and a double by Scales highlighted a 4-run first inning.
KCKCC added 17 more hits in the 11-3 5-inning nightcap. Morisette and Santiago each had four hits while Scales and Holroyd each drove in three runs with a double and single. Vanderheiden also had had two hits while Ford doubled and drove in two runs.
Henington pitched the first two innings, allowing three hits and no earned runs while Seimears pitched the last three, allowing just a pair of hits and striking out six.