04/15/07 — Lovett's homers highlight game one comeback in league sweep of Pfeiffer

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Lovett's homers highlight game one comeback in league sweep of Pfeiffer

By MOC Sports Information
Published in Sports on April 15, 2007 2:13 AM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Erik Lovett slugged a pair of two-RBI home runs, including a walk-off shot in the bottom of the ninth inning, to lead nationally-ranked Mount Olive College past in-state foe Pfeiffer University 7-6 in game one on Saturday afternoon.

The Trojans completed the Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference sweep with a 7-2 victory in the nightcap. Darrell Ellis tossed a complete-game four-hitter for Mount Olive, which reached the 40-win mark for the first time in seven years.

Lovett gave MOC a 2-0 lead with a two-run blast in the first inning after Dustin Richardson kept the rally alive with a two-out single. The Trojans (40-11, 20-3 CVAC) added single runs in the fifth and sixth innings, while Pfeiffer scored twice in the top of the sixth.

Mount Olive recorded 14 hits, but the Falcons turned five double plays to keep themselves in the game.

Pfeiffer (24-24, 13-10) took its first lead of the game with three runs in the seventh as Tyler Smith singled in a run and Ryan Brown added a two-run single to put the Falcons on top 5-4. The Trojans tied the game in the bottom of the seventh when Lovett scored on Josh Carter's RBI double.

The Falcons regained the lead in the top of the eighth, setting the stage for Lovett's ninth-inning heroics.

Richardson drew a walk to lead off the inning and Lovett sent a 2-0 pitch out of the park for his 17th home run of the season, including his second walk-off. Lovett entered the week tied for fourth in the nation in home runs.

Ted Pelech (2-0) relieved Trojan starter Judson Smith in the seventh and picked up the win. Pfeiffer reliever Chris Russell (3-3) took the loss.

The Trojans did all of their scoring early in the nightcap as an error, a wild pitch and Lovett's RBI single gave Mount Olive a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first.

Mount Olive broke the game open with five runs in the third as the first six Trojans all reached base. Richardson led off with a single and Lovett drew a walk. Carter, Scott Houin, Josh Harrison and Jason Sherrer all reached on singles as the Trojans extended their lead to 7-0.

Pfeiffer got on the scoreboard in the fourth on Bryan Braxton's lead-off home run, his seventh of the year. The Falcons capped the scoring with a two-out rally in the seventh as Kyle Pugh doubled and scored on Emmanuel Turner's single.

Ellis (6-1) took a two-hitter into the seventh inning and finished with five strikeouts. He retired 11 of 12 batters during one stretch late in the game.

Pfeiffer starter Jonathan McDaniel (7-3) went the distance, allowing nine singles and retiring the side in order in each of the final three innings.

Mount Olive won 43 games during the 2000 season, one year after compiling a school-record 48 wins in 1999.

Weather permitting, the teams conclude their three-game series today at Scarborough Field. Game time has been moved back an hour to 2 p.m.