Belles in running for title

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, July 14, 2015

After breezing through the sub-district and district tournaments undefeated, the Troy Belles’ streak came to an end Saturday in the state tournament with an 11-7 loss to Montgomery American in the opening round of the State Tournament.

The team then battled back with three more wins, including an 8-3 rematch against Montgomery American, and will face Underwood at 10:00 a.m. today in the championship game.

“I think we went down there with a little too much confidence,” head coach Larry Sanders said. “I told them now we can see what kind of team we are.”

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In game one, Troy had a lead heading into the fifth inning, thanks in part to a homerun by Molly Kate Sanders. But they hit a rough inning in the fifth and relinquished the lead to Montgomery for their first loss.

They came back and defeated Demopolis 15-1, Montgomery AUM 13-2, and they also defeated Montgomery-American in a rematch game 8-3 vaulting them into the championship game.

In the semi-final game against Montgomery-American, the Belles raced out to a 5-0 lead in the first inning. The Belles pitching staff led by Brooke Bennett held Montgomery scoreless until the fourth inning when they were finally able to get on the board.

Brooke Bennett started the game for the Belles and went six innings, Sydni Garrett came in and shut the door from there.

Among the Belles players who stuck out offensively on Monday were Garrett who picked up a base hit, Bennett with a double, and Sydney Armstrong and Molly Kate Sanders both with base hits.

“We hit the ball really well in the first inning,” Sanders said. “We just didn’t finish out the game hitting like I would have wanted.”

Molly Kate Sanders will start on the mound. Sanders still has eight innings to work with before she reaches her innings limit, while Garrett has five and Bennett has six.

“I’ve got plenty of pitching, so we should be ready to go,” Sanders said. “We are going to come out and play really hard.”

First pitch of the championship game is scheduled for 10 a.m. in Greenville.