By CLINT FOSTER
The weather wasn't the only thing heating up, Monday afternoon.
The Mineral Wells Lady Rams (16-5) were simply on fire in both phases of the game as they crushed the Graham Lady Blues, 10-0, in five innings at Kessler Field.
The run-rule performance came a mere two days after a disappointing, mirror-image loss to Lubbock Cooper on a cold Saturday afternoon in Graham, when the Lady Pirates beat Mineral Wells, 10-0, in five innings.
Head coach David Tarver said his team's ability to bounce back is one of their many strengths.
"We go and get beat by Lubbock Cooper, Saturday – it was cold, we just absolutely didn't show up for that game – and 48 hours later it's forgotten," he said. "Good athletes have a short memory."
Against Graham, sophomore pitcher Kelsey Keeton had a no-hitter through four innings – allowing a lone single in the top of the fifth frame. Only two other Blues reached base on her all game on a walk and an error. On offense, Keeton was 1-for-3 with two RBIs.
"Kelsey's been solid," Tarver said. "She's been solid ever since she's been here. Nothing fazes her.
"Her and Allie (Stephens) both pitch their game, regardless of the situation. Winning, losing, stress, no stress, it doesn't matter. They approach every pitch exactly the same."
Not only did Keeton get credit for the victory, but also her second shutout in four game dates. The second year varsity pitcher shrugged off her performance like a wily veteran, instead placing her focus on the Lady Rams' home District 6-3A opener against Castleberry, Tuesday night.
"My screwballs were working very well," Keeton said of her one-hit performance against Graham. "I knew I had a good defense behind me, so I wasn't very nervous. It was exciting, but it was just another game."