World Series is business as usual for six Troy Belles

Published 8:33 pm Thursday, July 31, 2014

Most young ball players spend the childhood summers longing for a trip to the Dixie World Series. More than likely they will never make it.

However, six members of the Alabama Belles are used to the pomp and circumstance of a World Series run. Molly Kate Sanders, Kelsey Gibson, Sidney Armstrong, Tucker Earles, Sydni Garrett and Hannah Calhoun all played in the Ponytails World Series just a year ago.

Alabama head coach Larry Sanders says the girls have grown a lot since last year’s trip to Alexandria, La.

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“They are all veterans and leaders of the team now,” Sanders said. “They each contribute in a different way, and it has really been fun to watch them get better over the last year. A lot of girls want to get to a World Series, and they are now going on their second one.”

All of the girls except one – Hannah Calhoun – are making their second trip to a World Series. Calhoun is in her third straight.

Calhoun was a member of the Troy Angels team that hosted the 2012 X-Play World Series, last year’s Ponytail contender and is a key pitcher and infielder for the 2014 squad.

Sanders feel Calhoun is one of the more versatile players on the team.

“Hannah does everything well,” said Sanders. “She is one our top pitchers, and plays defense well in the infield. She can swing the bat good too, and can bunt. She is a really valuable player to have, and I’m glad she is ours.”

The 2014 Alabama Belles are looking to do something that no other softball team in Troy history has accomplished: win a Dixie World Series.

The group is looking for a little revenge after last season’s World Series trip to Louisiana didn’t have a happy ending.

“We want to win it this year,” Sanders said. “If we play well and don’t make a lot of errors, we should have a chance. All I want is to have a shot.”

Troy opens the tournament Saturday against Virginia at 5 p.m.