Softball drops three straight road games

Michael Shipma

Sports Editor

The Troy softball team continued its recent struggles, dropping a pair of games at South Carolina over the weekend and a 9-1 decision at Auburn on Wednesday, April 6.

The Trojans (23-12, 4-5 Sun Belt) lost the series opener in Columbia, South Carolina, on Saturday, April 2, by a score of 8-0, as well as the second game on Sunday, April 3, by a final score of 10-7. With the losses, Troy has now lost five of its last seven games.

In the series opener, the Gamecocks (24-5, 7-2 SEC) simply outplayed Troy, using a four-run sixth inning to end the game by mercy rule. It looked as if Troy might be able to get back in the game if they could get on base, but the Trojans totaled a single hit in the game.

Senior pitcher Nickie Blue picked up her 12th win of the season for South Carolina, recording three strikeouts, eight ground outs and seven fly outs in six innings pitched. Behind her pitching, the Gamecocks were able to score as needed throughout the game.

Second baseman Krystan White and left fielder Taylor Williams batted in two runners apiece, helping the Gamecocks put together a 4-0 lead going into the sixth inning. An unproductive top of the sixth set up South Carolina’s scoring spree in the inning, with a two-run RBI double up the middle from Williams sealing the game for the hosting Gamecocks.

In the second game, the Trojans were able to find more success at the plate than in the game prior, but again it just wasn’t enough to overcome the talent of South Carolina.

Troy took its first lead in the series when senior Erica Davis scored on an error in the third inning, making the score 2-1 in favor of the Trojans. It was a lead that would last only until the bottom of the inning, when South Carolina exploded for six runs.

Senior Becca Hartley scored off an RBI double from sophomore Carli Kayler in the fourth to make the score 3-7, but once again the Gamecocks pulled away, with a three-run showing in the bottom of the inning.

With the score at 10-3, Hartley gave the Trojans life in a three-run homer in the fifth and an RBI single in the seventh, but solid pitching down the stretch by South Carolina kept Troy at bay.

Troy tried to bounce back when it traveled to Auburn to take on the No. 2 Tigers.

The Trojans’ woes at the plate continued, with senior catcher Heather Johnson, Kayler and Davis recording the only  hits of the game.

Auburn brought across four runs in each of the first two innings to go up 8-0 early, thanks in part to a two-run home run from sophomore right feilder Madi Gipson. Johnston scored the Trojans’ lone run in the top of the fifth inning.

The Trojans will return to action on Saturday, April 9, when they travel for a three game conference series against UL-Monroe. First pitch of the series is at 1 p.m.

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