03/22/12 — Trojans batter No. 5-ranked Catawba

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Trojans batter No. 5-ranked Catawba

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on March 22, 2012 1:48 PM

MOC Sports Information

SALISBURY -- Jacob Rogers flexed his muscles and swatted four home runs, and No. 14-ranked Mount Olive College swept a doubleheader from in-state rival Catawba, 17-12 and 11-1, on Wednesday afternoon.

The Indians, ranked No. 5 nationally, raced to a 6-1 lead in game one.

The Trojans (20-6 overall) climbed to within 6-4 and grabbed the lead on Antonio Callaway's grand slam home run down the left-field line. Rogers followed with the first of his four HRs to cap the eight-run rally.

Rogers ripped his second HR to put MOC comfortably ahead 13-6, but the Trojan pitching staff struggled to keep Catawba off the board during the fifth inning. The Indians parlayed three singles and three walks into a five-run outburst that closed the gap to 13-11.

Geno Escalante's RBI single and Mike Mercurio's three-run HR in the top of the sixth inning put Catawba away.

Skylar Sopotnick (2-0) tossed 2 1/3 innings to get the win, while Jake Moser worked 2 2/3 innings for his first save of the season.

The teams combined for eight HRs in the game.

In the nightcap, Chris Hinton (2-0) silenced the Catawba offense and allowed his lone run -- a solo homer to Garrett Furr -- in the first inning. The right-hander fanned five Indians, walked one and wiggled his way out of two bases-loaded jams.

The Trojans broke the game open early, scoring five times after Indian starter Nick Lomascolo (5-3) retired the first two batters. Rogers, Jermaine Berry and Escalante each singled. Bradon Reitano walked and Daniel Oliver delivered a three-run double.

Cameron Sherrer also doubled home a run in the frame.

An inning later, Rogers belted his third homer of the night down the left-field line. In the fourth, he sent his fourth blast down to right, giving him nine HRs for the month of March and a Conference Carolinas-leading 11 overall.

Sherrer later added an RBI double to finish 3-for-3.

MOC concludes its eight-game road swing with a three-game weekend series at Conference Carolinas in-state rival St. Andrews. The Trojans return home March 27 against St. Augustine's.