Knox leads MOC past Carson-Newman
By MOC Sports Information
Published in Sports on February 13, 2011 1:51 AM
MOC Sports Information
GREENWOOD, S.C. -- Preseason All-American Michael Knox lived up to his billing on Saturday, blasting two more home runs and driving in five runs to lead fifth-ranked Mount Olive College in a 15-3 rout of Carson-Newman College on day two of the Lander Baseball Invitational.
In five games this year, the junior from Cary already has four home runs and 11 runs batted in.
Dan Hayduk also homered and drove in four runs, while Antonio Callaway went 3-for-4 with three runs scored, Jacob Rogers collected three RBI, and Daniel Coffey went 2-for-4 with a pair of RBI for the Trojans, now 4-1 on the year.
The Mount Olive offensive assault made it an easy day for the Trojans' other preseason All-American, pitcher Carter Capps, who went six innings, scattering five hits and walking two while striking out six. His only two earned runs allowed came on a third-inning home run by Carson-Newman's Wesley Dozier. The victory, Capps' first of the year, helped the sophomore from Kinston run his career record to 11-0.
Both teams went scoreless in the first two innings, but Mount Olive changed that with a big third inning. Carson-Newman starter Austin Bridgewater (0-2) issued one-out walks to Ryan Faison and Rogers, setting the table for Knox' first home run of the day. Joseph Westbrook followed the home run with a walk, Nick Gaeta reached on an error, then Coffey and Hayduk produced consecutive RBI singles to increase the Trojans' lead to 5-0.
Dozier's home run for the Eagles in the bottom of the frame cut the margin to 5-2, but Mount Olive came right back with a run in the top of the fourth. Callaway started the inning with a double into the left-field corner, moved to third on a Faison groundout and scored on a sacrifice fly by Rogers.
The score remained 6-2 until the top of the sixth, when the Trojans put the game away with a seven-run inning. Callaway again led off the inning by reaching base, this time after being hit by a pitch. Two batters later, he scored on a triple by Rogers. Knox followed with his second home run of the day, and Mount Olive led 9-2.
Westbrook followed Knox with a double, Gaeta reached on a walk, and Coffey drove home Westbrook with an RBI single. Hayduk then cleared the bases with his first home run of 2011, putting the Trojans up 13-2.
Mount Olive had 13 hits, the fourth time in five games this year that the Trojans have reached that number. The team also reached double-digits in runs scored for the third time this season.
The Trojans conclude their tournament schedule today with a 3 p.m. matchup against eighth-ranked Tampa. The game features Mount Olive, the 2008 national champions, against Tampa, who won two of their multiple national titles in 2006 and 2007. The game will include four players, two from each side, on the "watch list" for the Tino Martinez Award, given to the Division II National Player of the Year.
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