Trojans win finale

Published 11:14 pm Monday, March 9, 2009

MIAMI, Fla. — The Troy University Trojans had been waiting for almost three games for someone to get a big hit against a tough FIU pitching staff.

When the big hits started, they came in a hurry as Troy got solo homers from Ryan Ditthardt, Miles Hoyle and Trevor Tyre in the final two innings on Sunday to battle back for a 6-5 victory over FIU.

For the Trojans, who had been held scoreless by FIU pitching for 19 consecutive innings before a Daryl Otwell sacrifice fly in the second on Sunday, the win salvaged the final game of the weekend Sun Belt Conference series.

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“This game was so big for us to avoid getting swept by a hot team that was playing with a lot of intensity,” Trojans coach Bobby Pierce said. “We had to work for everything that we got, but I am so proud of the team for hanging in there until the very end.”

Troy is now 8-4 overall on the year and 1-2 in league play while FIU falls to 6-3 overall and 2-1 in the Sun Belt. The Trojans will return to action with a mid-week non-conference series at North Florida on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Trojans appeared to be on their way to suffering just their second series sweep in four seasons of Sun Belt play, trailing the Panthers and senior starting pitcher Corey Polizzano 5-1 after four innings of play.

“They had outstanding pitching all weekend and today was no exception,” Pierce said. “We were just never able to get much going against them until late in the game today.”

But, the tide started to turn in the sixth inning when Troy plated a pair of runs off Polizzano.

Troy continued to trail going to the eighth inning.

Ditthardt drilled a home run. It was his fifth homer of the year and drew the Trojans to within one run.

Troy came to bat in the ninth needing at least one run to extend the game. The run came on the first pitch when Miles Hoyle blasted a homer to center to knot the score at 5-5.

Trevor Tyre, who came into the game as a pinch hitter in the seventh, followed two pitches later with a long homer of his own, giving Troy its first lead of the series.