MURRAY — Since the program’s inaugural season in 2010, three Racer pitchers have combined to toss a total of five no-hitters. Chelsey Sullivan (twice), Mason Robinson (twice) and Hannah James have carved out a permanent place in the Racer record book with memorable performances. Even more impressive, three of the five no-hit efforts were also perfect games.
The first no-hitter in Murray State softball history came on Feb. 27, 2011, when Chelsey Sullivan struck out three Bruin batters in a five-inning 8-0 Racer victory over Belmont at the War Eagle Classic in Auburn, Alabama.
Sullivan would also be responsible for the program’s second no-hitter just over a year later when the Racers cruised to a 14-0 triumph on the road over Tennessee State in an OVC contest on March 10, 2012. The senior from Shelbyville, Illinois, recorded five strikeouts over five innings to secure the second no-hitter of her career.
A little more than five years would pass before a Racer pitcher accomplished the feat again, but this time a spectacular outing from Mason Robinson set the bar even higher when the Lewis Center, Ohio, native recorded the first perfect game in program history. Despite collecting just one strikeout, the 6’2” senior hurled six perfect innings to lead her side to an 8-0 victory against Belmont on April 23, 2017 to celebrate Senior Day in style with a memorable afternoon in the circle.
Making up for the five-year drought between no-hitters for Racer pitchers, Robinson rode the momentum from that incredible outing to record yet another perfect game less than a week later when she tossed a six-inning gem against Eastern Illinois on April 28, 2017. Fanning seven Panther batters in the contest, she led the Racers to an 8-0 victory at Racer Field.
The fifth and most recent no-hitter for the Racers also came in the form of a perfect game when Hannah James dealt what is perhaps the most impressive single-game outing in program history against Belmont on March 31, 2019. In a game that was scoreless until the home half of the fourth inning, Murray State would be the first team on the board when Sierra Gilmore hit a solo home run to give her side a 1-0 lead.
That single run proved to be the decisive one as James worked seven perfect frames, striking out five Bruin batters as Belmont once again became the victim of an incredible performance from a Murray State pitcher as the Racers came out on top with a 1-0 victory in an OVC clash at Racer Field. James became the first Racer pitcher to record a seven-inning perfect game (or no-hitter) and also became the first freshman to accomplish the feat.