MONROE, La. – Shane McCain tossed a two-hit shutout and Troy was relentless at the plate in a 10-0 victory in seven innings over ULM on Sunday afternoon at Warhawk Field in the rubber game of the Sun Belt Conference series.
McCain (4-0) allowed just a pair of singles and one walk while striking out seven ULM batters despite a 33 mile-per-hour wind blowing out all game. The junior left-hander, who held South Alabama to just two hits over six innings last week, needed just 100 pitches to work the complete game.
Trae Santos put the Trojans (15-7, 3-3 Sun Belt) on the board in the top of the first with a single to center after Logan Pierce walked and Danny Collins was hit by a pitch.
Troy kept the pressure on in the second as 13 Trojans batted in the inning and seven runs crossed the plate. With runners at first and second and two outs, Collins hit a scorching line drive that ULM second baseman Jeff Fuller was lucky to get a glove on, the play was ruled an error and allowed a run to score.
ULM starter Alex Dumaine then walked Santos to load the bases and followed with another walk to Matthew Howard to plate a run. Andrew Richardson came out of the bullpen for the Warhawks and served up a two-run double to Garrett Pitts before hitting Josh McDorman.
Ali Knowles followed with a two-run single up the middle and Brandon Brown drew a walk to load the bases. The third pitcher of the inning, Tyler Bray, walked Tyler Vaughn to cap the seven-run frame.
Pitts was 3-for-4 with a pair of RBIs and finished the series 6-for-11 with three RBIs. Santos was 2-for-4 with a pair of RBIs and two runs scored after hitting his fifth home run of the season – a solo shot in the sixth – that give Troy a 9-0 lead. Knowles also finished with a pair of hits and two RBIs.
Troy pitchers combined for 27 strikeouts in the series while the Trojan hitters combined to strikeout just six times, including zero on Sunday.
Knowles, who reached base in all four of his plate appearances, led off the seventh with a walk and moved to third following a single by Brown and a grounder by Vaughn. Knowles was erased on a play at the plate, but Pierce drove a single through the right side of the ULM infield to score Vaughn and put Troy in position for the run-rule victory.
Dumaine (1-2) took the loss for ULM after allowing six runs – one earned – on two hits in 1.2 innings; he walked five and struck out none. It was the second straight game that ULM’s starting pitcher recorded just five outs.
Troy opens a five-game homestand on Tuesday when Auburn comes to Riddle-Pace Field; first pitch between the Trojans and Tigers is set for 6 p.m.
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