05/12/08 — MOC gets regional

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MOC gets regional

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on May 12, 2008 1:49 PM

MOC Sports Information

MOUNT OLIVE -- Mount Olive doesn't need to make any travel plans or surf the internet for the best hotel deals this week.

The Trojans are staying home.

The nation's No.-1 ranked baseball team will play host to the 2008 NCAA Division II South Atlantic Regional this weekend at Scarborough Field. The six-team, double-elimination event gets underway Thursday with three games.

It's the first time in MOC history that an athletic team will host an NCAA tournament on campus. The Trojans played host to last year's regional, but had to play at historic Grainger Stadium in Kinston.

Mount Olive (49-5 overall) is making its eighth playoff appearance in the program's Division II era. The Trojans played in five straight South Atlantic Regionals from 1996-2000 and are seeking their first-ever trip to the Division II College World Series.

Mount Olive advanced to the NAIA College World Series in 1992.

The NCAA Selection Committee split the six-team regional between the Conference Carolinas and Peach Belt Conference. Mount Olive and North Georgia (41-19) grabbed the automatic bids, while the remaining four teams were awarded at-large berths.

The Trojans drew the top seed and face Conference Carolinas regular-season runner-up Erskine (S.C.) in the opening round Thursday. The Flying Fleet (44-11) are making their maiden flight in NCAA tournament play. Game time is 7 p.m.

No. 25-ranked North Georgia, also a first-time participant, meets Peach Belt foe USC-Aiken (44-15) in the regional opener at 11 a.m. Conference Carolinas tournament runner-up Belmont Abbey (40-20) faces defending regional champion Columbus State (Ga.) University at 3 p.m.

Three games are scheduled for Friday and Saturday, with the championship slated for 1 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets are $10 per day for adults and $5 per day for students with identification. Four-day, all-session passes are also available -- $35 for adults and $15 for students.