Some things never change, and that’s how Truman High School softball coach Dan Harper likes it.
In her first outing of 2018, Kara Amos three three shutout innings in a softball jamboree at Adair Park, allowing just one hit and striking out two batters in a 2-0 win over Raymore-Peculiar.
“It looks like she’s picking up where she left off last year,” Harper said with a big grin on his face. “She is a special young lady.
“She is involved in so many activities at Truman, she’s a great kid and teammate and she can pitch a little bit too.”
Amos is coming off a sophomore season that most prep players can only dream about.
She finished with an 11-3 record (that included a 1-0, nine-inning Class 4 District 14 loss to Blue Springs), an 0.59 ERA, 131 strikeouts in just 94 1/3 innings and 12 walks.
She also starred at the plate, where she hit .389 with 15 doubles, two triples, four home runs, 28 RBIs, 41 runs, 15 walks, a .491 on-base percentage and a .733 slugging percentage.
Along with Examiner All-Area first-team honors, she was All-Suburban Big Six, all-district, all-region and a second-team member of the Missouri Fastpitch Coaches Association all-state team.
Truman activities director Eric Holm was watching the Patriots participate in the jamboree, and he, too, smiled when asked about the junior standout.
“Just a great kid,” Holm said. “So unselfish, she never shows any emotion out there (on the mound) and would never do anything to show up one of her teammates. And she’s just a junior, so we can enjoy watching her play and enjoy being around her at the high school for two more years.”
While Amos is ice out on the mound, her longtime friend and catcher Chloe Armstrong, is fire – and together, they form the perfect battery.
“I get all fired up,” said Armstrong, who had a monster 2017, winning The Examiner’s Player of the Year award with 14 homers, 45 RBIs and a .473 batting average.
“Kara is just so cool out on the mound. That’s why I love to catch her. She can give up a hit – and she doesn’t give up many – and she is just cool and collected and you know she’s going to get the next batter out.
“She knows what I’m thinking and I know what she’s thinking and we have a lot of fun together.”
However, this will be the last year of fun for the duo that could turn into the best 1-2 punch in Eastern Jackson County because Armstrong is a senior.
“This year is all about winning for our seniors,” said Amos, as the Patriots hope to improve on last year’s 23-6 record. “I know I’m going to be crying like a baby on Senior Night, because I love all the girls on this team, but our seniors are so special.
“I don’t know what we’d do without them.”
Even though it was just a three-inning jamboree stint on the mound, Amos’ performance got everyone fired up.
“Put her on the mound and she’s going to get people out,” Armstrong said. “I love catching her so much.”
Harper is blessed with great depth on the mound as sophomore Myel White threw 81 innings and posted a 1.38 ERA and struck out 110 batters.
“It gets you excited to see Kara do what she did today, and we know that Myel is going to have another great year,” the veteran coach said. “We have the chance to be a pretty good team this year.”