BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – In need of a win to earn a spot in the Conference USA
Championships, WKU Softball turned to sophomore Kelsey Aikey who delivered an
absolute gem – limiting FIU, who was in the hunt for the regular season title, to
just a pair of infield singles en route to a complete-game shutout win for the
Hilltoppers. The Cedar Falls, Iowa, native has been tabbed the league’s Pitcher of
the Week for her performance, the C-USA office announced Monday.
“Aikey’s performance in the circle was her best outing thus far this season,” head
coach Amy Tudor shared. “She knew what challenge she was up against and stepped up
with a gutsy and stellar performance.”
A pitchers’ duel from beginning to end, Aikey got the final say as the Hilltoppers
outlasted FIU in a 1-0 decision. The righty opened and closed the game with a
swinging strikeout and racked up three more punchouts in between. Aikey allowed just
two hits in her sixth complete game of the year – her third complete-game shutout.
With the help of her defense after allowing the pair of hits, Aikey retired
12-consecutive Panther batters to keep the Hilltoppers in the driver’s seat and
out-duel the reigning Freshman of the Year, Shannon Saile, in a must-win game.
Across the week, Aikey made a pair of appearances, working 11.1 innings in total
while registering a 1.24 collective ERA with 10 strikeouts. The sophomore was in
shutdown mode with the pressure on – with opponent runners on base, Aikey allowed
just three batters to reach base in 20 opportunities for a .150 average while she
was even more impressive with two outs: allowing zero batters to reach base
This marks Aikey’s second C-USA Pitcher of the Week nod of the season and her career
after she shared the honor following her extra-inning no-hitter the second weekend
of the 2018 campaign.
For the second year in a row, WKU Softball will occupy the eighth seed at the C-USA
Championships. The Hilltoppers will open postseason play with an 11 a.m. CT tilt on
Wednesday against No. 5 seed Marshall from Charlotte, N.C.