MOUNT OLIVE, N.C. – A win over Saint Augustine’s, followed by a three-game sweep of Limestone, was enough to propel Mount Olive back to the summit of the Collegiate Baseball Magazine Top 30 Poll this week. The Trojans were ranked No. 1 in the poll from February 4-18. Since then, Mount Olive has ranged from second to fourth in the poll.
The Trojans (39-4 Overall, 17-3 Conference Carolinas) opened the week with a dominating performance at the USA Baseball Complex in Cary, N.C. The Trojans pounded out 16 hits before having to survive a late rally in an 11-8 win over Saint Augustine’s. Matt Patrone led the charge for Mount Olive, delivering three hits and four RBI. On the mound Derek Justice came in to get the final out after SAU scored three in the eighth and three in the ninth to make things interesting.
Over the weekend, things were rarely interesting between the Trojans and Limestone. The Trojans outscored Limestone 29-6 in clinching the Conference Carolinas regular season championship and extending their winning streak to 17 games.
In the opener, Matt Dillon did not allow an earned run in eight innings of work as Mount Olive won 9-2 in game one of a doubleheader. In the nightcap, Justice tossed six shutout innings and Daniel Oliver homered in a 5-0 blanking. In Sunday’s finale, Mike Mercurio drove in four and Bryan Dunlavey added three as the Trojans pounded the Saints 15-4.
The Trojans leap-frogged Delta State for the top position. Mount Olive received 480 votes, while Delta State had 462 and CSU-Chico 458.
In the College Baseball Lineup polls, the Trojans remained No. 2 behind only Delta State.
Mount Olive gets its final tests before the Conference Carolinas Tournament when Francis Marion comes to Scarborough Field Tuesday night for a 6 p.m. start, then the Trojans travel to Misenheimer, N.C. for a three-game series with Pfeiffer this weekend. A single game is scheduled for Friday at 3 p.m., followed by a Saturday doubleheader starting at noon.