Baseball Tops Francis Marion 13-8

Baseball Tops Francis Marion 13-8

University of Mount Olive defeated Francis Marion 13-8 Tuesday night in non-conference baseball in Florence, S.C. Stephen Wallace led the Trojans with a three-run home run in the fourth.

Mount Olive (16-13) struck first in the third inning after being held to just one hit in the first and second innings. Jack Sherrill drew a lead-off walk to get the Trojans cooking. Zak Orrison dropped down a sacrifice bunt and moved Sherrill to second. Brett Lang picked up an RBI-single to center and Mount Olive was on the board.

Wallace wasted no time as behind in the count 0-1 the Trojan designated hitter belted a ball 378 feet over the left field fence and gave Mount Olive a 4-0 lead. 

Francis Marion (19-13) fought back in the bottom of the fourth. Casey Clauss singled up the middle with one away to start the Patriots. Logan Koch singled as well and Clauss moved to second. Chase Haas singled as well one out later but drove in Clauss from third and the deficit was three. 

Cole Morris doubled home two with a base hit down the left field line. Brooks Kennedy brought in the tying run as his single through the left side scored Morris and the game was tied at four.

The Trojans regained the lead in the top of the fifth off an RBI-single by Lang. Francis Marion, however tied the game again in the bottom half off a Koch RBI-single.

Mount Olive pushed for the lead again in the top of the sixth. Bradley Ragan doubled down the right field line to lead -off the inning. Ragan moved to third on a groundout by Nate Estes. Alvin Swoope plated the go ahead run on an sacrifice fly to right and Mount Olive led 6-5.

Francis Marion clawed their way back in the bottom of the sixth on the back of back-to-back RBI-singles by Jd Crowe and Randy Loew and the Patriots led 7-6.

In the top of the eighth Mount Olive looked to take the lead for good. Ragan got things started with a one out single into left. Estes singled as well, into left, and Ragan moved to second. Swoope reached on a fielder's choice as the play was in time to get Estes at second. Brandon Day came in to pinch hit and was hit on a 2-2 pitch to load the bases.

Orrison drove home the tying and go ahead runs with a two RBI-double to left center.

Following a scoreless bottom of the eighth, Mount Olive went on to tack on some insurance runs.

Two straight walks to Lang and Wallace gave way to Joe Koehler loading the bases with a single to right with no one away. Ragan singled past second and Lang scored. Estes reached on a fielding error by the Patriot second baseman and two runs came home and with it Estes picked up the RBI. 

Swoope reached on a fielder's choice to third on his sacrifice bunt attempt but another error by Francis Marion allowed another run to come home. After two strikeouts David Mayo plated the final run as a throwing error by Francis Marion allowed Estes to score and Mount Olive had a five run cushion.

The Trojans slammed the door in the bottom of the ninth as the Patriots were retied in order and Mount Olive came away with the road win.

Dario Santangelo (1-2) was credited with the win in relief. Santangelo threw two and a third without surrendering a hit. He did allow one walk, but added a strikeout.

Mount Olive will head back into Conference Carolinas play as the Trojans travel up I-795 to take on arch rival Barton College this weekend. Game one is set for 2:30 p.m. Friday from Wilson, N.C.