Asked her thoughts on being voted Kentucky’s Miss Softball by state coaches on Sunday, Montana Fouts, true to form, gave credit to her East Carter teammates, specifically catcher Caroline Young, as well as her father/pitching coach, her family and the Grayson community.
Fouts may be reluctant to toot her own horn. Scott Ingram didn’t mind doing it for her.
“What does it say about how good someone is when big news for a game involving her is that she gave up a couple hits? Seriously?” Ashland’s coach said.
The day after the Lady Raiders played in the state tournament semifinals for the first time in program history, Fouts was named Miss Softball by
the Kentucky Softball Coaches Association. She departs East Carter for the University of Alabama as the state’s all-time career leader in pitching victories (148) and strikeouts (1,964) and second in earned-run average (0.31).
Fouts threw a perfect game in the 16th Region Tournament quarterfinals as East Carter topped Ashland. It was Fouts’ eighth perfect game and 12th no-hitter of the season, the second-most in a season in the state record books.
“She is the only player who I knew the margin of error was so slim (against),” Ingram said. “Like I said (earlier this season), after one and especially two runs, every one they got after that, it was like they were scoring 10. How dominant is that?”
Not just in the circle, either: Fouts hit .502, homered 37 times and drove in 276 runs in her career.
Fouts and East Carter’s Class of 2018 have done more than just deliver eye-popping personal numbers: they’ve totally changed the trajectory of the Lady Raiders’ program.
Before Fouts’ sophomore year, East Carter had never so much as played in the region tournament championship game since fastpitch softball was introduced in 1995. The Lady Raiders now have won three straight region titles and advanced to the state tournament final four as Fouts and her classmates’ final act.
“Montana and these seniors have shaped softball in Grayson,” East Carter coach Derek Calhoun said. “She has helped at camps, gave lessons, and even umpired some games at the field. She and her teammates are among many reasons the Little League softball numbers have come up over the last few years. The young girls get to watch her play and want to be like her.”
Added Fouts: “I am lucky and blessed to have put on the uniform for seven years. It was an experience of a lifetime.”
Fouts is the third 16th Region player to be named Miss Softball and the second in four years. Ashland’s Megan Hensley was so honored in 2015, and Rowan County’s Amber Riddle got that nod in 2009.
Fouts last week was named the Gatorade Kentucky Softball Player of the Year for the third consecutive spring. Hensley garnered that award the two years before that.
“The attention that (Fouts) and Megan Hensley have brought to the area is immeasurable,” Ingram said. “I am proud of what both have done most importantly for themselves, but the attention they have brought to our area and in turn other players and teams is great for the sport here in this part of the state.”
The KSCA also released its all-state teams on Sunday. The teams are divided into Class 1A, Class 2A and Class 3A (the smallest third, middle third and largest third of all softball- playing schools in the state, enrollment-wise, respectively).
Fouts and teammate Eden Mayo and were Class 2A first-teamers.
East Carter took home Class 2A Coaching Staff of the Year honors.