MOBILE, Ala. – South Alabama’s Farish Beard tossed a five-inning no-hitter as Troy was shut out 9-0 by the 18th-ranked Jaguars on Wednesday night at Jaguar Field.
The no-hitter marked the second time Troy (20-27, 7-11 Sun Belt) has been no-hit this season as Florida State’s Lacey Waldrop tossed a five-inning no-hitter on March 2. Also, it marked the first time the Trojans have been held hitless in Sun Belt play since North Texas’s Ashley Kirk and Lauren Poole combined for a no-hitter against the Trojans in 2011.
Beard (20-0) retired the first nine Trojans she faced in the circle for the Jaguars before Troy’s Kacie McAllister drew a walk to lead off the fourth. The sophomore struck out nine of the 17 hitters she faced and gave up two walks in five innings of work.
South Alabama’s (41-7, 17-3 Sun Belt) five-run fourth inning at the plate keyed by Haley Fagan’s three-run home run extended the Jaguars’ lead to 9-0 to put the mercy-rule in effect heading to the fifth inning. Beard struck out a pair of Trojans in the frame to seal the no-hitter.
The Jaguars got on the board as a leadoff walk by Troy starter Jaycee Affeldt came back to haunt the sophomore as Emily Messer’s seeing-eye RBI single to left plated a run in the second.
Affeldt (6-4) threw all four innings surrendering nine runs (eight earned runs) and 11 hits. The sophomore struck out three and issued four walks during her outing.
In the third, South Alabama picked up three runs in part to a Troy throwing error on a sacrifice bunt attempt that allowed Blair Johnson to reach after Brittany Fowler led off the frame with a single. Haley Fagan’s RBI single
that fell in front of a diving Amanda Winters in right field scored Johnson from third to extend the Jaguars’ lead to 2-0. South Alabama picked up two more runs off and pushed its lead to 4-0 with a one-out double by Kaitlin Griffith to the left field wall.
Troy had its best run-scoring opportunity in the top of the fourth as Beard issued a pair of walks to McAllister and Caitlin Ortiz, who extended her reached-base streak to 23 games; just one game shy of Nikki Hollett’s 24-game streak in 2011. South Alabama got out of the jam as Beard closed out the frame with a strikeout to strand both base runners.
The Trojans hit the road for the final time this season and face No.22 UL Lafayette at Lamson Park for a three-game series beginning on Saturday. Troy and UL Lafayette begin the three-game set on Saturday with a doubleheader set to start at 1 p.m. and wrap up the series on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.