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Palmer pitches two-straight no-nos

THARPTOWN — Over the last two seasons the Tharptown Lady Wildcats softball team has had several program firsts.

Tharptown had never won a game at the regional tournament before last season, but the Lady Wildcats ended up being the runners-up in Huntsville last year.

The team had never made a trip to Montgomery and competed in the state tournament, but once again the team found itself playing at that level in 2012.

The school picked up its first win at state as well with a close victory over the South Lamar Lady Stallions of the Tuscaloosa area.

Thanks to the pitching of sophomore Shelby Palmer and the defensive and offensive capabilities of the team, the program now has its first-ever perfect game.

That mark stood for an entire 24 hours, though, as Palmer followed up her performance against Phillips Monday with a perfect game against Belgreen on Tuesday for back-to-back no-nos, yet another team first.

Before the team’s 8-4 win over area foe Hackleburg Wednesday, Palmer, with the help of the defense backing her up, had retired 18 straight batters over six innings of work without giving up a single hit, run or even walk.

Couple that performance with the explosive offense Tharptown has been seeing, and the two-straight perfect games do not seem that unlikely anymore.

The Lady Wildcats down both Phillips and Belgreen 15-0 in three innings.

“It feels good. We need to keep it up,” Tharptown head coach Susie Sellers said.

“We’ve outscored our area opponents 71-5. We’re doing well hitting the ball pretty well. I’m proud of Shelby and Autumn [Thomas.] The way Shelby is pitching and Autumn is catching, those two work well together.”

The team’s goal is to make it back to Montgomery this season, but only time will tell how far the Lady Wildcats will make it.

“Physically I think we can do it, but mentally we have things to work on. That will come with time, I’m sure,” Sellers said.