By Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information
TROY, Ala. – After a run-rule loss to No. 16-ranked Ole Miss to start the day, the Tennessee Tech softball team had a chance to knock off Trojan Classic host Troy in the second game of the day, but the rally fell short as the Golden Eagles fell 3-2 on Friday afternoon.
Tech (2-9) dropped a 12-2 decision to the Rebels in the first game.
Getting the start in the circle, Leigh Ellen Thomas was tagged for eight runs – seven earned – on eight hits in three frames of work, walking five. Kayla Hughes pitched the final two innings, allowing four runs on six hits.
Kaitlin Lee improved to 5-0 on the season, allowing two runs on three hits as she struck out one in three innings pitched. Beth McCulley, Raegan Sparks and Callen Griffin picked up Tech's only hits of the game, with Sparks hitting her third home run of the season with a two-run shot in the third inning.
Elantra Cox and Kylan Becker each went 3-for-4 for the Rebels, with Kaylee Horton and Dylinn Stancil each driving in two runs.
In the second game of the day, Waldrop pitched a solid effort, allowing three runs – two earned – on five hits as she walked four and struck out two, but fell to 1-3 on the season.
The Trojans took a 1-0 lead in the bottom half of the fourth inning as Erica Davis hit a leadoff homer, but Tech tied the game in the top of the sixth. McCulley hit a one-out double to right field, then Bayli Cruse knocked McCulley in with a single to right, knotting the score at one.
Troy responded in the bottom of the inning, pushing two runs across as Kyndal Riddick scored on a passed ball, then Davis scored on a Brooke Echols single up the middle.
Tech had a chance in the seventh. Gabby LaSala and Griffin led off the frame with walks, prompting a pitching change. Sydney Love-Baker grounded into the infield, but a fielder's choice resulted in the bases loaded. Alyssa Herlocker and Thomas were retired on a pop-up to second and a fly-out to left field respectively, but McCulley took a walk, pushing a run across to cut the deficit to one with the bags still filled with Golden Eagles. Sparks was able to make contact on a pitch, but the ball sailed into the center fielder's glove to end the contest.
The Golden Eagles return to action on Saturday as Tech takes on UAB at 9 a.m., then Murray State at 2 p.m.
Photo by Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information