Trojan baseball takes the series from the Hilltoppers

Amy Austin

Staff Writer 


Troy hosted Western Kentucky over the weekend, and the Trojans took the series win from the Hilltoppers, 2-1.

Troy tried to rally in hopes of winning game one, but WKU took the win, 5-4.

“Friday night, again we didn’t get off to a very good start,” said head coach Bobby Pierce. “We really let that game get away from us.”

Senior pitcher Tanner Hicks took the loss for the Trojans. Hicks was only able to pitch four innings due to a line drive off the arm.

Troy trailed 5-0 in the bottom of the seventh, but then the bats came alive. Junior outfielder Clay Holcomb and senior outfielder Ali Knowles both hit singles to start the inning.

Senior second baseman Garrett Pitts then singled up the middle to score Holcomb and Knowles. Senior first baseman Matthew Howard would then bunt down the third base line to score Pitts. These runs cut WKU’s lead down to 5-3.

Troy was able to score one more run in the ninth, but couldn’t get the tying run across the plate and took the loss.

Troy gained momentum on Saturday, April 12, to take the game from the Hilltoppers, 11-6.

“We came back behind a good performance by Shane McCain,” Pierce said. “We competed better, I felt like, as a team.”

Senior pitcher Shane McCain pitched seven innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. Freshman pitcher Marc Skinner came in and allowed the Hilltoppers to tie the game, but the Trojans at bats didn’t let the tie last for long.

In the bottom of the eighth with bases loaded, junior designated hitter David Hall hit a fastball back up the middle to score Knowles and Holcomb and gave Troy the lead.

Junior outfielder Jo-El Bennett and junior third baseman Nick Masonia were both hit by pitches, which scored another run. Troy scored two more runs in the eighth to secure the victory.

Championship Sunday proved true again for the Trojans as they won the final game of the series 10-5.

“After getting down 1-0, we put up a big inning in the fourth, scored six,” Pierce said. “Scored four more in the eighth. We didn’t finish it out quite the  way I’d like to see us finish it out, but we did get the win 10-5 to win the series at home. That’s something we’ve struggled to do lately.”

Junior pitcher Ben Tidwell came in and gave the Trojans the chance to catch up after falling behind early. Tidwell pitched 6 and 1/3 innings and only allowed one run on eight hits. He also struck out three.

Troy’s bats came alive in the eighth inning as Pitts and Hall were both walked, and then Bennett and Masonia were both hit by pitches to plate the first run for the Trojans.

Junior first baseman Trevin Hall was then also hit by a pitch, which scored the go-ahead run for Troy. Senior shortstop Tyler Vaughn singled to score another Trojan, and Masonia scored on a WKU throwing error.

The defense helped the pitching staff over the weekend as the defensive players turned six double plays throughout the series, three of which were on Sunday, April 13.

Two offensive players contributed to Troy’s runs throughout the weekend, David Hall and Garrett Pitts. Hall was four for five on April 12 with five RBIs. Pitts had two RBIs on April 11, which contributed to half of Troy’s runs. On April 13, Pitts was two for three at the plate.

“Those two have been our most consistent throughout the year and it’s good that you can lean on them week in and week out,” Pierce said.

Troy will travel to Arkansas on April 18-20 to take on UALR.

Related posts