The No. 3 (USA Today NFCA D1 Coaches Poll) / No. 3 (ESPN USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 Poll) Virginia Tech Hokies preseason All-American pitcher, Keely Rochard (24-2), threw a no-hitter, Friday afternoon, against the Saint Francis (PA) Red Flash. For the first time in program history VT hosted a round of the NCAA Softball National Championship and the performance did not disappoint. The Hokies had not taken the field since their surprise defeat, during the ACC Championship, at the hands of the No. 14 / No. 13 Clemson Tigers. The No. 2 / No. 2 Florida State Seminoles went on to win the conference tournament and jumped Virginia Tech in the polls, despite the Hokies having dominated the Seminoles during their regular season series.
The women of VT softball returned Blacksburg with a fervor and something to prove. Rochard struck out 17 batters on the way to her ninth career no-hitter. On base the Hokies were quite the thieves, stealing five bags. Emma Ritter accounted for two of those larcenies and a run. Maija Louko, Mackenzie Lawter, and Jayme Bailey scored one run each, showing the third largest crowd in program history a 4-0 victory.
17 Ks. Zero hits— ESPN (@espn) May 20, 2022
Keely Rochard was dealing in the NCAA Softball Tournament ♨️ pic.twitter.com/jQk1N4eM6b
After their 15-1 defeat of the Miami-Ohio Red Hawks, the Virginia Tech Hokies will face off against the Kentucky Wildcats tomorrow, in Blacksburg, at 3 PM eastern. The game will be televised on ESPN.