Kansas University junior left-hander Shaeffer Hall pitched the fifth individual no-hitter in school history as the Jayhawks downed Air Force, 5-0, on Friday in the first game of the Service Academy Classic at USA Stadium.
The Jayhawks dropped the second game to Memphis, 5-4.
Hall, a 6-footer from Lee’s Summit, Mo., pitched a complete-game no-hitter. He struck out seven while walking three batters.
“(Hall) was really special today,” KU coach Ritch Price said. “For him to go out there and no-hit a team on just 104 pitches is an outstanding accomplishment. It’s one of the best performances by a pitcher that I’ve seen in my 30 years of coaching.”
Hall walked the first hitter and then retired 17 in a row before allowing another walk in the sixth.
“I was feeling good warming up, but the nerves kind of got to me early,” Hall said. “As the game went on I felt like I got stronger. I got behind a couple of hitters in the first inning, then I went out in the second and third inning and felt a lot better; more like myself.”
Hall became the first Jayhawk pitcher to throw a complete game no-hitter since David Hicks no-hit Northwest Missouri State on April 2, 1980.
A group of five Kansas pitchers no-hit Texas Southern on Feb. 1, 2004, in the most recent no-hitter by a KU team.
Hall’s toughest spot came in the sixth inning with KU ahead, 1-0. Hall issued two-out walks to Nathan Carter and hit K.J. Randhawa. Second baseman Robby Price made a nice play on a ball hit into the hole on the right side to end the inning.
Hall said it was his first no-hitter since his junior year in high school. That no-no was a seven-inning game.
“This time was a little more special,” he said, “going nine innings. I’m pretty excited about it.”
The Jayhawks led Memphis, 4-2 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning. Memphis scored three runs off closer Paul Smyth.