03/19/06 — Lancaster gets 600th win at MOC

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Lancaster gets 600th win at MOC

Published in Sports on March 19, 2006 2:02 AM

Courtesy MOC

Sports Information

DUE WEST, S.C. -- Coming out of Eastern Wayne High School, Jesse Lancaster had a number of choices where to attend college and play collegiate baseball. The prospect of experiencing days like Saturday is the reason he chose to play for his father.

Freshman Jesse Lancaster tossed his first collegiate complete game, giving his father, Head Coach Carl Lancaster, his 600th career victory as Mount Olive defeated Erskine 11-1 in game two of a Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference baseball doubleheader Saturday at Due West, S.C. Carl Lancaster ranks in the top 25 in career wins and career winning percentage among active NCAA Division II baseball coaches with a record of 600-328.

"It's hard to put into words," said Carl Lancaster, who is in his 20th year at the helm at Mount Olive. "This is one of the most special moments of my career. Jesse absolutely pitched his heart out."

Mount Olive (20-9 overall, 9-6 CVAC) gave Jesse Lancaster (3-1) all the runs he needed early in game two as Josh Carter's rbi-double and Stephen Nordan's rbi-single highlighted a three-run first inning. Lance Martin belted a two-run homer in the second inning to extend the lead to 5-0.

Lancaster, who allowed two baserunners in the first inning, says being able to pitch with an early five-run lead helped give him confidence on the mound.

"I settled down after the first inning and felt good the rest of the way," said Lancaster. "I felt like we had No. 600 at that point."

Erskine (22-6, 7-3) scored its only run of the game in the fourth on Wesley Burgess' rbi-single. But Mount Olive right fielder Graham Wooten ended a Flying Fleet rally by throwing a runner out at the plate for the final out of the inning.

Kyle Curtis doubled home a run in a two-run fifth inning and the Trojans added a run in the sixth for an 8-1 lead. Wooten ignited a three-run seventh inning with an rbi-single and capped the day's scoring when he came home on David Cooper's rbi-double.

Cooper and Wooten collected three hits apiece. Cooper stole two bases in each of Saturday's two games to give him 28 for the season, best in the CVAC.

Lancaster retired nine of the final 10 batters he faced to seal the historic win. He tossed a five-hitter and struck out four in the seven-inning contest.

After picking up his 599th win Friday, Carl Lancaster could have reached the 600-win mark in game one Saturday, especially with Trojan ace Justin Staatz on the mound. But Erskine's bats came to life in a 12-5 victory.

"Things happen for a reason," said Lancaster. "I guess Jesse being on the mound for win number 600 was meant to be."

Despite the game one loss, the Trojans captured two wins in the three-game series against the conference leader. Mount Olive could find itself as high as second place in the CVAC standings after this weekend's conference action.

In the first game, Mount Olive took a 3-2 lead in the top of the second inning on Martin's two-run single. Erskine tied the game in the bottom half on back-to-back doubles by J.J. Newman and Shelton Cisson.

Mount Olive converted a pair of errors into two runs in the top of the fourth, but Erskine took the lead for good with a five-run sixth inning, highlighted by Robbie Knapp's three-run homer.

Staatz (4-3), who entered the game with a 2.25 earned run average, allowed six runs in 51/3 innings.

Mount Olive first baseman Josh Carter went 0-for-4 in game one, ending his 16-game hitting streak. The Trojans have won six of their last seven games.

Mount Olive returns to action Tuesday as the Trojans travel to Florence, S.C., for a neutral-site, non-conference game against nationally ninth-ranked Armstrong Atlantic State (Ga.). First pitch is 6 p.m.

Jesse Lancaster likely won't see any action until next weekend's three-game CVAC series at home against Barton. But he'll have plenty of time to savor Saturday's win.

"That's why I came to Mount Olive, to have days like this," said Lancaster. "Hopefully, we'll have more of them."

Friday's game

Pennington solid

for Trojans

Phillip Pennington pitched eight scoreless innings and Lance Martin drove in three runs to lead Mount Olive to an 8-1 win over conference leader Erskine in Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference baseball Friday at Due West, S.C. The victory moves Trojan head coach Carl Lancaster within one win of the career 600-win mark.

Mount Olive (19-8 overall, 8-5 CVAC) broke a scoreless tie with three runs in the third inning as Martin doubled home a run and Josh Carter connected on a two-run single. The hit extended Carter's hitting streak to 15.

The lead stayed at 3-0 as Pennington (2-2) kept Erskine off the scoreboard, scattering eight hits.