Smith tabbed USA South Pitcher of the Week with four victories, 25 strikeouts

Smith tabbed USA South Pitcher of the Week with four victories, 25 strikeouts

Maryville College's Katlyn Smith earned her second weekly honor from the USA South this week, as the sophomore was named the conference's Pitcher of the Week.

Smith earned a 4-0 record, claiming the victory inside the circle in each appearance she had this week. The Loganville, Ga. native tallied 25 strikeouts, while giving up just two earned runs over 21.1 innings of work. She held an ERA of 0.66 for the week.

"She was dominating on the mound," Head Coach Leah Kelley said. "Right now, she's throwing the ball with such confidence. It really showed against the competition we played this weekend. They were getting hits off her. They were hitting the ball, but she just showed a great amount of composure on the mound."

Smith moved to 9-2 on the season, as she pitched a trio of complete games. She led the Scots to six-straight wins, including a trio of USA South sweeps.

In her first game of the week, Smith propelled MC to a 8-0 shutout of Brevard College. The 5-foot-8 Grayson High product gave up just one hit – a shallow blooper to right – while striking out six in the Scots' conference opener.

She came back in the second game of the series, pitching 2.1 innings of relief. The Scots rallied for a 5-3 victory, as Smith gave up just one earned run and three hits. She struck out a pair in earning the win in relief.

Smith again pitched a shutout on Saturday, knocking off USA South foe Wesleyan College (Ga.), 6-0, in a complete-game effort. She fanned nine wolves, while giving up just three hits.

Finally, Smith pitched an eight-strikeout performance against conference foe Agnes Scott College on Sunday, leading MC to a 2-1 win. Her complete game saw just four hits and one earned run to her credit.

Kelley said her pitchers have been more confident, as the Scots have been fielding a phenomenal .965 behind them.

"It's such a comfort when you have such a defense like we have behind you," Kelley said. "Our defense is very experienced. They've been there and done that, and they've got a lot of reps. They are playing with a lot of confidence right now, which allows our pitchers to throw with such freedom. It shows."

That confidence shows in Smith's stat line, as the reigning USA South Rookie Pitcher of the Year holds a 1.46 ERA. She's given up just 14 earned runs in 67.1 innings of work, while striking out a conference-leading 80 batters. Her ERA ranks second in the league, as do her nine victories inside the circle.

Smith has 10 complete games on the season.

The sophomore will lead the Scots into a non-conference bout on Wednesday, March 27, against Birmingham-Southern College. First pitch in the double-header against the Panthers is slated for noon.