02/04/07 — Mount Olive baseball opens season with split

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Mount Olive baseball opens season with split

By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on February 4, 2007 2:07 AM

SAVANNAH, Ga. -- No. 20-ranked Mount Olive and Armstrong Atlantic State split a season-opening doubleheader on Saturday afternoon at Pirate Field. The Trojans took advantage of seven AASU errors to pick up the win in game one, 10-3, but the Pirates rebounded in the second game to win, 4-1.

A scoreless game in the fourth inning of game one turned into a rout as the Trojans (1-1) clubbed three home runs over the final three innings to pull away from the Pirates (1-1) and pick up the 10-3 win in game one. AASU committed seven errors in the contest, while the Trojans collected 11 hits, more than enough offense for lefty Tom Layne (1-0), who limited the Pirates to just one run and three hits in six innings pitched.

Jeff Chase (0-1) took the loss for AASU, giving up six hits and five runs -- three earned -- in six innings pitched.

Sean Hotzak drove in all three runs for the Pirates, on an RBI single in the fourth and a two-run home run in the ninth, while three different players for the Trojans had two hits and two RBI -- Stephen Nordan, Scott Houin and Jason Sherrer.

In the second game, the Pirates took advantage of a Trojan error to plate three first-inning runs, while Vyt Rivers and Nate Herder combined to limit Mount Olive to just one run and five hits in the 4-1 victory.

AASU loaded the bases with two outs in the first inning when Houin misplayed a ball off the bat of the Pirates' Marc Noble, allowing all three runners to score.

That was enough for Rivers (1-0), who hurled seven innings of one-run ball, striking out six. Herder pitched two hitless innings for his first save of the season.

Judson Smith (0-1) was the hard-luck loser for the Trojans, giving up three hits and four runs -- only one earned -- in six innings pitched.

The loss by the Pirates in game one of the doubleheader was the first loss by an AASU squad in a season-opening game since 1999, and the meeting between the two South Atlantic Region foes was the first since 1999. Both teams were participants in the 2006 South Atlantic Regional but did not meet.

The Pirates and the Trojans wrap up their season-opening series with a doubleheader today, beginning at 11 a.m.