CHICAGO HEIGHTS | The last batter was the toughest for Allison Spence on a windy Monday afternoon.
The Marian Catholic pitcher went to 3-1 count on Joliet Catholic's Josie Henderson. Then Henderson tapped one back to Spence, who threw to first baseman Noelle Cudzillo for the final out of a perfect game.
The Times No. 3 Spartans beat the Angels 8-0 on Spence's first high school no-hitter and perfect game.
"Man. I was I nervous," Spence said. "I knew since the fourth inning I had a perfect game. I go to 3-1 on her and I figured I would just get it over the plate and it would either be a ball or she would hit it. It came right back to me and I threw to first. I didn't want to make a bad throw."
Coach Kerri Evans was the first out of the dugout to hug her pitcher, followed by teammates, including catcher Gabby Angellotti.
"She did pitch a perfect game," Angellotti said. "She had control and had them off stride all afternoon.
"It was really fun to catch a perfect game."
Angellotti had a perfect day at the plate as she was 3-for-3 with a walk and two home runs. Marian hit four homers as Spence and Haley Earl also homered.
Spence said the wind did not bother her, though it was blowing out to left field.
"It really didn't because I was just trying to keep the ball a bit out of the strike zone," Spence said. "I wanted to keep them off stride. I used my two-seam fastball and curve and they were working."
She struck out 12. No balls were hit out of the infield. Four other balls were hit back to her. Spence (6-4) struck out at least one every inning. She struck out the side in the third inning.
The Spartans (12-7, 8-3) score twice in the first. They added two more in the third, fifth and sixth innings. Spence and Angellotti hit back-to-back homers to open the third inning. Angellotti hit a two-run blast in the sixth.
"That first homer, I was just trying to get us some runs because I wanted us to get more more than two," Angellotti said. "I got the bat good on both."