Oh Patrick Schuster got all the initial publicity for his 4 no-hitter streak -- despite him being a marginal draft prospect for MLB this year and likely to go to college instead -- but his streak is NOTHING compared to the sheer MASTERY of Rachele Fico, a senior softball player for Masuk High School in Connecticut.
For example, on Wednesday she pitched a perfect game, striking out 20 of 21 batters, with the only contact made coming on the second to last out. The perfect game was her 4th CONSECUTIVE perfect game and her 43rd(!!!!!!) no-hitter all-time; alas it was merely her 7th THIS season.
"For four years [the other teams have] been cheering for foul tips," said Masuk coach Jacqui Sheftz. "To the other teams' credit, they are coming out here and taking their cuts ... but Rachel right now is at the top of her game."
Then on Thursday, showing the heart of a champion Fico went out and pitched ANOTHER no-hitter, although she lost the perfect game by walking a batter. On the season in 11 games, she has now given up 2 hits and 2 walks. Total. For the season. 4 base runners. Total. Unbelievable. Her season ERA is .006. For her high school career Fico has gone a robust 90-2. I can't stop making declarative sentences.
Of course, Fico actually says she prefers HITTING over pitching, like on Wednesday when in addition to her on the mound mastery, she threw in a 4-4 performance at the plate, including a home run and a double.
Not too shabby.
Rachel will toe the slab next year for LSU, currently ranked the 22nd best team in the country. Methinks Fico might have something to do with seeing that ranking rise a bit...