NORTH BERWICK — If one thing has become apparent this season in SMAA softball, it’s that not many teams are going to outslug Thornton Academy.

That point was proven emphatically Wednesday afternoon as the top-ranked Trojans overpowered No. 2 Noble 13-5 at Peter Meagher Memorial Field. Abby Miner and Hannah Collins each hit two home runs – going back-to-back in both the fourth and sixth innings – to back the pitching of Olivia Howe.

The Trojans (10-0) scored six runs in both the fourth and sixth innings to overcome an early 4-1 deficit against one of the state’s elite pitchers, Noble junior Raegan Kelly.

“We got through our lineup one time against Raegan,” said Thornton Coach John Provost. “She just kept our girls off balance, and I think they made some great adjustments and the bats came alive.

“One through nine, we’re tough up and down the lineup. And if the girls at the bottom do their job and get on base, we’re a dangerous team.”

That they are. Noble (7-2) led 4-1 after two innings, scoring two runs in the first (RBI singles by Kelly and Kassidy Lessard) and two in the second (back-to-back two-out errors). Then Thornton settled down.

“We know we have a deep team, we’re a good hitting team,” said Howe, who struck out 12. “And we have a lot of heart, so we knew if we kept fighting, we could get back into it. And lucky enough, we did.”

Thornton’s batters moved closer to the plate the second time through the order to take away the outside pitch that Kelly was throwing. Miner, a sophomore first baseman who grew up in Savannah, Georgia, and played at Lisbon last year before transferring to Thornton Academy, led off the fourth with a towering home run to left. Collins followed with an equally impressive drive to center.

After Madison Vachon followed with a single, Noble Coach Rick Melanson tried to settle his team down. “I don’t think they ever regrouped from the first two (home runs),” he said. “We were up 4-3, but I looked out and it was like, they’re panicking. I said, ‘Look up at the scoreboard. We’re up 4-3.’ But sometimes the confidence is low.”

Aided by two Noble errors, the Trojans sent 11 batters to the plate before the fourth ended and scored six runs to take a 7-4 lead. Jenica Botting had an RBI single and Amanda Bogardus drilled a two-run double that one-hopped the fence in center.

“Having Abby come on the squad this year has been awesome,” said Howe. “She’s just produced a lot of runs and a lot of hits for us, and it’s nice having that kind of bat in the lineup.”

Noble got a run back in the bottom of the inning on Lessard’s second RBI single. But Howe left the bases loaded and set down the last 10 batters she faced, striking out seven.

Thornton came up with a six-run sixth, as Miner hit a three-run homer and Collins hit her second home run.

“The team came together for sure,” said Miner. “Teamwork did it.”

Melanson certainly came away impressed with Thornton’s hitting.

“I thought if we scored five runs, we’d win the game,” said Melanson. “I didn’t expect to give up 13.”

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