Trojans sweep Spring Break Softball Challenge

Published 2:59 pm Monday, March 13, 2023

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The Troy Trojans (19-7) traveled to Jacksonville, Fla., for the second time in two weeks this past weekend and broke out the broom for a 4-0 sweep over Army, Northern Kentucky and North Florida in the Spring Break Softball Challenge.

Troy outscored its opponents 29-3 over the course of the weekend. Senior Taylor McKinney was a menace at the plate, going a combined 7-for-12 with a home run, three RBIs, six runs, a triple and a double.

Troy beat Army in game one of the series on March 10 by a score of 7-1. McKinney went 2-for-2 at the plate with a run, while D’Aun Riggs, Natalie Turner, Jade Sinness, Jaida McCord, Audra Thompson and Kennedi Gaton scored one run each. Brantley native Leanna Johnson earned the win in the circle with one strikeout, while giving up two hits and one earned run in four innings. Haley Pittman pitched three innings and retired three batters along with giving up just one hit and no runs.

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On March 11, there was no slowing up for the Trojans as they completed the sweep over Army with an 8-0 shutout. McKinney once again led Troy at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a triple, a home run, two RBIs and three runs. Libby Baker also went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a run. Johnson pitched four innings and struck out four batters, while giving up two hits and no runs for her eighth shutout of 2023.

Troy followed up with a 9-2 victory over Northern Kentucky on March 11, as well. Kelly Horne went 2-for-2 at the plate with an RBI, while Riggs went 2-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and a run. Sinness scored two runs, while McKinney, McCord, Emma Grace Walker, Thompson, Gaton and Brantley native Kayden Dunn scored one run each.

Johnson pitched three innings and struck out four batters, while giving up three hits and no runs. Olivia Cato pitched two and 1/3 innings with two strikeouts, three hits and one earned run allowed. Baker had three double plays and both Turner and McKinney had a double play on defense.

The Trojans wrapped up the dominant weekend with a 5-0 shutout of host school North Florida on March 12. McKinney went 2-for-4 with an RBI, a double and a run, while Finch went 2-for-4 with a run. Thompson scored one run, while Riggs scored two runs.

Johnson pitched a complete game and picked up her second shutout of the weekend, mowing down eight batters and giving up just two hits and no runs. Gaton had a double play on defense.

Troy is back at home this weekend for a Sun Belt Conference series with Texas State March 17-19. All three games will stream on ESPN+.