( Photo / Troy Athletics )
Audra Thompson gets a hold of a ball in Saturday’s game against Belmont at Troy Softball Complex. The Trojans beat the Bruins 3-1 on Saturday.
The Troy Softball program kicked off the 2021 season with a perfect 4-0 after downing Ole Miss, UAB and Belmont.
The Trojans opened up the 2021 season downing SEC foe Ole Miss, 5-2, before toppling in-state rival UAB, 8-0, in the nightcap of day one of the Trojan Classic Friday at the Troy Softball Complex.
Troy’s win over Ole Miss marked the first time since 2007-08 that Troy has defeated an SEC opponent in back-to-back seasons where the Trojans defeated Auburn, 3-0 and 3-1, in consecutive seasons.
Against Ole Miss, the action kick started in the top of the third inning when a dropped fly ball scored Tate Whitley to put Ole Miss on the board first.
The Trojans quickly retaliated in the bottom of the third with two runs of their own. Kelly Horne smashed a double down the right field line to score Candela Figueroa and Jade Sinness, who reached on a walk and an error, respectively.
Troy tacked on runs in the bottom of the fourth, fifth and sixth to secure the victory.
In the nightcap, Troy pitcher Libby Baker retired the side in the first two innings of the contest. The Trojans hopped on the board with a single run in the bottom of the third inning.
Troy’s offense continued to roll scoring three runs in the bottom of the fourth and four in the fifth to end the game.
On Saturday, the Trojans came from behind in the bottom of the fourth inning to down the Belmont Bruins, 3-1, to remain unscathed in the Trojan Classic.
Troy answered a one-run deficit in the bottom half of the fourth inning to earn the team’s first 3-0 start since the 2018 season.
The contest was a pitchers’ duel through the first three innings. Troy’s Baker sat down five of the nine batters she faced to open up the matchup.
In the top of the fourth inning, Belmont (0-2) utilized a walk and a trio of singles to plate the first run of the game.
In the bottom half of the inning, Katie Webb singled to center field to kick start the offense. Kelly Horne and Katie Lively got on with a hit by pitch and walk to load the bases for Mia Jenkins. Jenkins took a hit by pitch to score Webb and even the game at one.
Leanna Johnson entered the circle for the Trojans in the top half of fifth and retired the side bringing Troy’s offense back to the plate.
Logan Calhoun led off the fifth with a single up the middle. A single through the right side put two on for Troy’s cleanup hitter, Webb.
Webb smashed a double to deep center, scoring Calhoun and Jade Sinness and giving Troy the lead once and for all.
The Trojans run-ruled Belmont on the final day of the Trojan Classic to secure the perfect opening weekend.
In her first appearance in the cardinal and white, Brianna Bailey tossed a no-hitter to down Belmont, 8-0, and lead the Trojans to a perfect 4-0 opening weekend.
Bailey’s no-hitter was the first no-hitter thrown by a Trojan since teammate Leanna Johnson blanked Georgia State on April 7, 2019.
With the victory, Troy recorded its first 4-0 start since the 2012 season when the Trojans swept the Southeastern Louisiana Lion’s Classic in the opening weekend.
Troy jumped on the board first in the bottom of the opening frame after Kelly Horne roped a double down the left field line to score Katie Lively.
After Bailey struck out the side in the top half of the second, Logan Calhoun tacked on another run for the Trojans in the bottom of the inning, scoring Ashlan Ard with her double down the right field line.
After a scoreless third frame, Troy’s offense broke loose in the fourth inning after Candela Figueroa led off with a single and Audra Thompson doubled to set up a pair of runners in scoring position with nobody out.
After a pair of hits and two walks plated three runs for the Trojans, pinch hitter Kennedi Gaton smashed her first hit as a Trojan through the left side, scoring Lively.
A hit by pitch and a walk scored the eighth run necessary to end the game in five. With the run rule in effect, Bailey and the Trojans retired the side to complete the no-hitter and the Trojans fourth victory of the weekend.
Troy returns to the diamond on Wednesday, Feb. 17 for a midweek matchup with Liberty. First pitch is set for 5 p.m. at the Troy Softball Complex.