03/03/04 — Trojan men entertain Erskine today

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Trojan men entertain Erskine today

Published in Sports on March 3, 2004 1:56 PM

MOC Sports Information

MOUNT OLIVE -- The Mount Olive College men's basketball team has an opportunity tonight to tie a school record for most wins in a season. More importantly, the Trojans have an opportunity to move a step closer to a conference championship and an NCAA postseason berth.

No. 2 seed Mount Olive plays host to No. 7 seed Erskine tonight in a quarterfinal-round game in the 2004 NCAA Division II Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference men's basketball tournament.

Tip-off is 7 p.m. at College Hall.

Admission is $5 for adults, or a special $1 admission for those with a military ID or students from any area school with a student ID.

Mount Olive (21-6, 15-5 CVAC) earned the No. 2 seed Sunday with a 79-50 win against Coker, coupled with Queens' 99-97 double-overtime loss at Anderson. Five Trojans scored in double figures Sunday, led by Brad McDougald and Elijah Rouse with 11 points apiece.

Mount Olive, which received a first-round bye, enters the tournament on a four-game winning streak. Each of the four wins has been by double digits and the average margin of victory has been over 22 points.

Erskine (14-14, 8-12) advanced to the quarterfinals with a 68-57 victory Tuesday over No. 10 seed St. Andrews. Bobby Isom led Erskine with 18 points, while Craig Williams added 17 points.

Mount Olive won both regular-season games against Erskine, but both contests came down to free throws in the final minute.

The Trojans prevailed 68-60 January 16 at College Hall in a game that saw Erskine rally from a 15-point deficit to take a one-point lead with less than three minutes left before Sharome Holloway and Johnny Galarza combined for 8-of-8 free throws in the final two minutes to pull out the win for the Trojans.

In the rematch February 7 at Due West, S.C., Mount Olive rallied from a seven-point halftime deficit to pull out a 63-53 win. The Trojans scored the final seven points of the game.

Mount Olive hopes to avoid a repeat of last year's CVAC Tournament, while Erskine is hoping for déjà vu to strike again. Mount Olive was the No. 4 seed and hosted a quarterfinal-round game last year, but fell to Pfeiffer 109-93 at College Hall.

Erskine pulled off one of the biggest upsets in CVAC Tournament history last year as the eighth-seeded Flying Fleet knocked off top-seeded Queens 71-66 in overtime. Queens went on to win the NCAA II East Regional and advance to the national semifinals.

Mount Olive's performance in the tournament could help determine the Trojans' fate relating to NCAA postseason play. The tournament champion earns an automatic bid to regionals, but Mount Olive also hopes to have the "safety net" of a high enough regional ranking to receive one of the five at-large bids to the eight-team regional. Mount Olive hopes to move up from its No. 9 regional ranking when the final regular-season East Region poll is announced today.

The Trojans hope to benefit from losses last week by No. 5 District of Columbia, No. 6 Mansfield and No. 8 Queens.

Mount Olive's 21 wins marks the Trojans' first 20-win season since posting a 22-6 record in 1998-99 and setting a school single-season win record. Mount Olive has a chance to tie the record tonight.

The winner of tonight's game moves on to the semifinals Friday at Due West. The semifinals and championship are hosted by Erskine.

Men's tennis team sweeps pair of matches

AIKEN, S.C. -- The Mount Olive College men's tennis team swept each of its first two matches this week during its spring break trip.

The Trojans defeated Augusta (Ga.) State 5-4 on Monday and edged USC Aiken 5-4 on Tuesday. They improved to 4-2 overall.

Against USC-Aiken, the Trojans split the six singles matches and won two of the three doubles matches for the win. No. 3 Ibrahim Bouaabdalli, No. 5 Camilo Sabogal and No. 6 Renato Varella all pulled out three-set singles wins.

Against Augusta State, Mount Olive rallied for four singles wins after losing two of three doubles matches. No. 1 Rafael Bustos and No. 3 Bouaabdalli led the way with straight-set victories.

The Mount Olive women's team dropped both of its matches, falling 8-1 at Augusta State and 7-2 at USC-Aiken.

Lucia Henkle posted a win against USC-Aiken at No. 1 singles and combined with Mariana Shimoda for a win at No. 1 doubles. Monday against Augusta State, Henkle suffered her first singles loss of the season and she and Shimoda suffered their first doubles loss of the season.

Mount Olive returns to action Friday as the Trojans travel to Division I UNC Wilmington. Match time is 2 p.m.



Mount Olive 5, Augusta (Ga.) State 4

Singles -- No. 1 Rafael Bustos (MOC) d. Zia Hai 6-4, 6-3; No. 2 Lindy Blount (USCA) d. Fernando Crisosto 6-2, 6-3; No. 3 Ibrahim Bouaabdalli (MOC) d. Raul Intriago 6-3, 6-4; No. 4 Victor Meza (ASU) d. Camilo Sabogal 6-1, 6-1; No. 5 Juane Schutte (MOC) d. Mathien Leblond 6-1, 6-3; No. 6 Renato Varella (MOC) d. Mike Vandenbale 6-4, 4-6, 6-2.

Doubles -- No. 1 Crisosto-Bouaabdalli (MOC) d. Hai-Blount 8-4; No. 2 Leblond-Guillaume Payment (ASU) d. Bustos-Schutte 8-3; No. 3 Intriago-Meza (ASU) d. Sabogal-Christof Franzsen 8-3.


Mount Olive 5, USC Aiken 4

Singles -- No. 1 Harshit Sharma (USCA) d. Rafael Bustos6-4, 6-2; No. 2 Pierre Negri (USCA) d. Fernando Crisosto 6-2, 6-1; No. 3 Ibrahim Bouaabdalli (MOC) d. Fernando Guevara 6-2, 4-6, 7-5; No. 4 Nicolas Lombardo (USCA) d. Juane Schutte 6-3, 6-4; No. 5 Camilo Sabogal (MOC) d. Fernando Blanco 6-2, 4-6, 6-2; No. 6 Renato Varella (MOC) d. Carlos Huerta 5-7, 6-4, 6-4.

Doubles -- No. 1 Crisosto-Bouaabdalli (MOC) d. Negri-Blanco 8-0; No. 2 Bustos-Schutte (MOC) d. Sharma/Lombardo 8-2; No. 3 Huerta-Guevara (USCA) d. Sabogal/Christof Franzsen 9-7.



Augusta (Ga.) State 8, Mount Olive 1

Singles -- No. 1 Ana Skafar (ASU) d. Lucia Henkle 6-3, 6-2; No. 2 Patricia Zurita (ASU) d. Mariana Shimoda 6-1, 6-1; No. 3 Norma Rovira (ASU) d. Samanthi Wijesekera 6-3, 6-4; No. 4 Maria Zevalla (ASU) d. Ashley Westbrook 3-6, 7-6, 10-7; No. 5 Ashley Abrams (ASU) d. Amanda Aycock 6-3, 7-6 (7-5); No. 6 Patricia Lozano (ASU) d. Lauren Harris 6-0, 6-0.

Doubles -- No. 1 Skafar-Rovira (ASU) d. Henkle-Shimoda 8-2; No. 2 Wijesekera-Aycock (MOC) d. Zevallo-Lozano 8-4; No. 3 Zurita-Abrams (ASU) d. Westbrook-Harris 8-0.


USC Aiken 7, Mount Olive 2

Singles -- No. 1 Lucia Henkle (MOC) d. Dominique Cassetori 6-1, 6-2; No. 2 Myra Kaefer (USCA) d. Mariana Shimoda 6-1 6-1; No. 3 Nicole Copp (USCA) d. Samanthi Wijesekera 6-1, 6-3; No. 4 Otavia Bastos (USCA) d. Ashley Westbrook 6-2, ret.; No. 5 Elly Toth (USCA) d. Amanda Aycock 6-1, 6-3; No. 6 Monica Budnichuk (USCA) d. Lauren Harris 6-0, 6-3.

Doubles -- No. 1 Henkle-Shimoda (MOC) d. Bastos-Kaefer 8-1; No. 2 Cassetori-Toth (USCA) d. Wijesekera-Aycock 8-2; No. 3 Copp-Heather Thornton (USCA) d. Westbrook-Harris 8-3.

Trojan baseball falls

FLORENCE, S.C. -- Chas Dobes threw a complete-game, eight-hitter as Francis Marion University stopped Mount Olive 6-2 in a non-conference baseball game Tuesday afternoon.

Dobes notched six strikeouts and snapped the Trojans' four-game win streak.

Allen Thomas and Craig Hurba each led Mount Olive with three hits apiece.

Steve Wesley (1-1) endured the pitching loss.

The two teams play again today on the Cornell Field diamond.