Mount Olive Wins On Opening Day Against No. 2 Lander 15-8

Mount Olive Wins On Opening Day Against No. 2 Lander 15-8

Chris Leduc made his Mount Olive debut and belted a grand slam in a 10 run 5th inning outburst as the 13th-ranked University of Mount Olive took a 15-8 opening day win against No. 2 Lander University at Scarborough Field in Mount Olive, N.C. for non-conference baseball. Rob Shipman also hit a big fly in the 5th to propel the Trojans ahead for good. Barbara Kornegay, wife of George Kornegay, threw out the ceremonial first pitch of the season. The baseball team will be wearing "GK" patches on their uniforms this season in memory of George Kornegay.

Mount Olive (1-0) shut the door in the first as Lander (0-1) went one-two-three. In the second the Bearcats used a lead-off hit by pitch to their advantage moving the runner to third where a John Mangum single plated the game's first run. With the bases loaded Will Jones brought home the second Lander run with a sacrifice fly to left.

The Trojans countered in their half of the inning as Justin manning began the inning with a single. After two outs DeAndre Allen drew a walk and the two then advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. That set up Jason Morozowski to tie the game with a two RBI single into center.

Lander did not let the game stay tied for long as Matt White singled to begin the third. After back-to-back singles, Zach Daly got a hold of a pitch and took it over the right centerfield wall to take a 5-2 Lander lead.

Mount Olive struggled to get any offense working in the third or fourth. Morozowski got a lead-off single to begin the fifth. After a Samauel Gailmard single and a Shipman walk, Stephen Wallace drew the bases loaded walk and brought in the first run of the inning.

Manning found an open area of grass in front of the right fielder and placed in a RBI single and the bases remained loaded. Brett Lang upon seeing a new pitcher for Lander was hit by a pitch and another run came home for the Trojans.

Leduc with the bases loaded still, waited for his pitch and sat back on a fastball inside and hit a shot over the left centerfield wall to clear the bases and Mount Olive took a 9-5 lead.

"I was sitting on an inside fastball something in and low especially with a three quarter submariner and it was a gift in location" said Leduc on his at bat in the fifth.

The Trojans were not done yet as Allen singled next and continued the threat. Joe Koehler drew a walk and moved into scoring position on a bunt single by Morozowski, however Allen was tagged out in a pickle at third.

Koehler scored on a Gailmard sacrifice fly to right and next up was Shipman. Shipman waited for a pitch as well on the inside and the lefty put a good swing into a pitch and beat the jumping Lander right fielder for the second home run of the inning, this time a two run shot and Mount Olive had a 12-5 lead.

Lander attempted to make the game interesting with two runs coming home in the top of the sixth but were answered right back by two Trojan runs in the seventh.

The Bearcats in the final inning started the inning off with back-to-back singles to put runners on the corners and with one away. Chris Hyatt then pinched hit a run in with a sacrifice to center. The run was the sole run to come home for Lander in the ninth and Mount Olive finished the game out on top.

Morozowski finished the game going 4-for-4 with two RBI. Gailmard went 3-for-3 with a RBI. Shipman was 2-for-3 with two walks and three RBI. Manning also was 3-for-4 with three RBI.

Carlos Rodriquez (1-0), a Junior lefty from Kapolei, HI., picked up his first career win as a Trojan. Rodriquez came in relief of the start Kodi Whitley and pitched two and two thirds allowing two runs off four hits and recorded on punch-out.

"Everyone was happy with the performance today and now we just have to keep it up and do it again tomorrow" said Leduc.

Logan Pemberton (0-1) was credited with the loss for Lander.

Mount Olive finishes out the short two game series with Lander tomorrow at Scarborough Field. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.