02/08/12 — Good start vaults MOC

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Good start vaults MOC

By MOC Sports Information
Published in Sports on February 8, 2012 1:48 PM

MOC Sports Information

MOUNT OLIVE -- On the strength of its season-opening three-game sweep, Mount Olive College seized the No. 1 ranking in the initial regular-season Collegiate Baseball Division II top 30 poll on Tuesday.

The Trojans (3-0 overall) swept a three-game weekend series against in-state rival Lenoir-Rhyne College. They rallied from multiple-run deficits to take a doubleheader from the Bears on Saturday. Mike Mercurio's grand slam highlighted a 15-run victory in game three on Sunday.

Mercurio was named the Conference Carolinas' baseball player-of-the-week for his career-best, 7-RBI effort against the Bears. The shortstop batted 8 for 12 with nine RBI and swiped four bases in the three-game set.

MOC received 472 points in the poll -- six points better than perennial power Central Missouri, which is ranked No. 2. Grand Valley State is third, followed by defending NCAA Division II national champ West Florida.

The Trojans are 15th in the second College Baseball Lineup top 30 poll of the season.

Mount Olive travels Wingate for a three-game weekend series that begins Saturday with a doubleheader. The teams met in the NCAA Division II Southeast Regional a year ago with the Trojans emerging victorious, 6-0.