10/08/04 — MOC sports

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Published in Sports on October 8, 2004 1:56 PM

Trojans seek postseason edge

MOUNT OLIVE -- The Mount Olive College men's and women's soccer teams will try to use their next-to-last regular season home game to move closer to home-field advantage in next month's conference tournament.

The volleyball team will try to move up in the regional rankings against a pair of ranked teams.

The men's and women's cross country teams will try for strong team and individual finishes as the Trojan fall sports teams are all in action this weekend.

The volleyball team gets things started this evening as the Trojans travel to Misenheimer to take on Pfeiffer in NCAA Division II Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference play. Match time is 6:30 p.m.

Mount Olive (16-7, 8-2 CVAC) is ranked No. 9 in this week's NCAA II Atlantic Region Poll and is tied for second in the CVAC standings, one game ahead of Pfeiffer (9-11, 8-3), which is ranked No. 10 in the region.

In the season's first meeting between the two teams at College Hall, Mount Olive overcame a sluggish first game with three dominant games in a four-game victory.

Less than 24 hours later, the Trojans tangle with Anderson (S.C.) College in their second meeting of the season. Mount Olive swept Anderson (13-8, 2-5) in three games in the teams' first meeting. Match time is 2 p.m.

The women's soccer team kicks off a home doubleheader Saturday as the Trojans play host to Limestone (S.C.) College in a CVAC battle. Match time is 2 p.m. at Trojan Field.

Mount Olive (10-2-0, 5-2-0 CVAC) is coming off a 7-0 victory against Coker (S.C.) College on Wednesday as Melanie Cobb notched her fourth hat trick of the season to give her a conference-leading 20 goals this season. The Trojans, who are currently in second place in the CVAC standings, wouldn't necessarily clinch a top-four, regular-season finish and homefield advantage in the CVAC Tournament with a win Saturday.

However, a win would assure the Trojans of finishing at least two games above .500 in the conference. And in the previous nine years of CVAC women's soccer, 36 of the 41 teams that finished at least two games above .500 in the conference went on to host a quarterfinal-round match in the CVAC Tournament.

Limestone (4-6-0, 1-3-0) is playing its first contest since a 3-1 loss to Barton last Saturday.

The men's soccer team concludes Saturday's doubleheader at Trojan Field with a CVAC contest against Limestone (S.C.) College. Match time is 4 p.m.

Mount Olive (10-2, 6-0-0 CVAC) used an early second-half explosion to outduel Coker (S.C.) College 5-1 on Wednesday. A win Saturday would reduce the Trojans' "magic number" to one to officially clinch homefield advantage in the quarterfinals of the CVAC Tournament.

The Trojans, the lone unbeaten and untied team in conference play, are in second place in the CVAC points standings (three points for a win, one point for a tie). Mount Olive is ranked No. 5 in the NSCAA/Adidas Southeast Regional Poll.

Limestone (1-9-0, 0-4-0) is coming off a 4-0 loss Tuesday to nationally 19th-ranked USC Upstate.

The men's and women's cross country teams head to Newton on Saturday morning to compete in the Lenoir-Rhyne Invitational. Race time is 10 o'clock.

Tim Insley recorded his first top-10 finish of the season last Saturday at the Ukrops Festival in Richmond, Va., placing ninth out of 38 runners. On the women's side, Becky Garrod has been the Trojans' top finisher in each of the first three races.

Volleyball team

opens poll at No. 9

MOUNT OLIVE -- Mount Olive College is ranked No. 9 in this week's NCAA Division II Atlantic Region Volleyball Poll, the first regional poll of the season. The Trojans finished last season ranked No. 7 in the region.

Mount Olive (16-7) is one of five Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference teams in this week's rankings, joining No. 5 Lees-McRae, No. 6 St. Andrews, No. 10 Anderson and No. 11 Pfeiffer. Clarion is ranked No. 1 in the region. Mount Olive fell in four games to Clarion over the weekend.

Mount Olive takes to the road this weekend for a pair of conference matches against ranked opponents. The Trojans travel to Pfeiffer Friday, then head to Anderson Saturday. The Trojans defeated both teams at Mount Olive earlier this season.

Women's basketball picked fifth in CVAC pre-season poll

MOUNT OLIVE -- Mount Olive is picked fifth in the 2004-05 NCAA Division II Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference women's basketball preseason poll released Thursday.

The Trojans received 50 points in the poll, finishing 14 points behind fourth-place Coker (S.C.) College and two points ahead of sixth-place Lees-McRae.

Mount Olive posted an overall record of 11-18 and finished eighth in the CVAC with a 6-14 mark last season. The Trojans return four starters from last year's squad including all-CVAC performers Ladora Charles and Latoria Harvey.

The Trojans defeated Pfeiffer in the first round of the CVAC Tournament and took top-seeded Barton down to the wire in the quarterfinal round before falling 79-75.

Defending conference champion Anderson (S.C.) College earned nine first-place votes to finish first in the poll with 99 points. Barton is second with 87 points, followed by Belmont Abbey with 84 points. Barton and Belmont Abbey received one first-place vote apiece.

Mount Olive opens its 2004-05 season November 16 at Livingstone.

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