QUINCY -- The three-game losing skid the Quincy Notre Dame softball team opened the season with seems like a long time ago.
Behind a hot offense, QND extended its winning streak to eight games in a row with a 10-0 five-inning victory over Western Wednesday afternoon at the Backyard. In the last four games, the Raiders' offense has scored 53 runs to improve to 8-3.
QND banged out 12 hits against Western.
"We're starting to get more comfortable," QND coach Eric Orne said. "In the field and in the batter's box it is really showing. We've had some really good hitting the past two games."
It helped QND pitcher Kristen Martin.
The junior right-hander picked up her second career victory, and her first career shutout. She allowed only two hits in five innings.
Martin didn't try to overpower Western (3-8). She simply let her defense make plays behind her.
"I just threw strikes," Martin said. "I know when I get on the mound my defense is behind me and always has my back. That lets me just focus on throwing strikes."
She also helped herself out at the plate.
Martin drove in the game's first run in the bottom of the first inning when she drove in Bailee Kindhart with a two-out double to left field. Kindhart reached base after hitting a one-out triple to center.
QND blew the game open with a four-run second inning, and all the runs came with two outs.
After two lineouts, Carolyn Dickerman doubled and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Lead-off hitter Peyton Oden drew a walk to give QND runners on the corners for Kindhart, and she doubled to score Dickerman.
Carly Wilson followed with a three-run homer to extend the lead to 5-0.
"I have a lot of confidence at the plate because of the hitters that surround me," Wilson said. "I have good hitters in front of me that put me in good situations, and I have good hitters behind me in case I can't get a hit when we need it.
"When you score as many runs as we have the past couple games, it gives us all a lot of confidence."
The Raiders scored three more runs in the third and two in the fourth to put the game away on mercy rule.
Kindhart, who was playing shortstop, finished 2 for 2 with two runs scored and two RBIs.
It's proving QND is past that rough stretch to start the season.
"We needed to get a couple (games) under our belt," Wilson said. "We were a little nervous, but now we're in our groove. We have some chemistry and confidence going, and it's really fun to see as a senior."
Quincy Notre Dame 10, Western 0
Western 000 00--0 2 0
QND 143 2x--10 12 0
Mellon and Hull; Martin and Carey. WP--Martin. LP--Mellon. 2B--Western 1 (Ash), QND 4 (Kindhart, Martin, Gengenbacher, Dickerman). 3B-- QND 1 (Kindhart). HR--QND 1 (Wilson).