03/02/08 — No. 1-ranked Mount Olive sweeps Anderson (S.C.) in baseball

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No. 1-ranked Mount Olive sweeps Anderson (S.C.) in baseball

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on March 2, 2008 2:02 AM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Top-ranked Mount Olive swept a Conference Carolinas doubleheader from Anderson (S.C.) University at Scarborough Field on Saturday afternoon.

The Trojans picked up a 14-7 win in the opener and took an 8-4 decision in the nightcap. The teams conclude their three-game series today at 1 p.m.

Mount Olive (17-1 overall, 5-0 CC) spotted Anderson a 2-0, third-inning lead on back-to-back homers by Pat West and B.J. Smith. Three batters later, Clint Neville mashed a two-RBI homer into the left-field woods.

The Trojans' Erik Lovett answered with a three-run home run.

Anderson moved ahead 5-3, but Mount Olive took the lead for good on Jason Sherrer's double which scored Lovett and Jesse Lancaster. Lovett, the reigning Daktronics Division II player of the year, added his second round-tripper in the eighth inning with the Trojans ahead 12-7.

"I was getting a lot of changeups, and I just stayed back and waited to get a pitch I could handle," said Lovett, a senior first baseman.

Trent Still's first-inning, two-RBI single staked Anderson to a 2-0 lead in game two.

Senior David Cooper opened the Trojans' first with a lead-off triple. After Lancaster got plunked, Alex Vertcnik scored Cooper on a fielder's choice. Lancaster raced home on Josh Harrison's base hit.

Two innings later, Mount Olive broke open the game. Three, two-out errors translated into five Trojan runs. Anthony Williams and Cooper ignited the rally with consecutive singles and Lancaster reached on a dropped third strike by Anderson's catcher.

Vertcnik drove in a run and came around to score on Lovett's double. Anderson's third defensive miscue allowed Lovett to score and give Mount Olive the breathing room it needed to sweep its 12th consecutive conference series.

"I was happy that we won, but we did not play the type of baseball that we are capable of," said MOC head coach Carl Lancaster. "I though our pitching was pretty suspect, and that we kind of got ahead and cruised to the finish."