Mount Olive College senior Jermaine Berry stroked seven consecutive hits and pitchers Alex Regan and Matt Dillon held nationally 27th-ranked California (Pa.) to just one unearned run as no. 4 Mount Olive swept a non-conference doubleheader 8-1 and 8-0 Friday evening at Scarborough Field.
Berry, the reigning Conference Carolinas Player of the Week, picked up where he left off last week, going 5-for-5 in the opener, then singled in his first, second and fourth at-bats in the nightcap.
That was more than enough support for Regan and Dillon, who won their eighth and seventh games respectively.
In the opener, the Trojans greeted Vulcan starter G. J. Senchak with three solo homers. In the first, Braden Reitano blasted his sixth shot over the left field wall with one out. Then Geno Escalante followed with his fifth of the season to right-center field. After California (Pa.) pushed across an unearned run in the top of the frame, freshman Zak Orrison led off the bottom of the fourth with his first collegiate homer for a 3-1 lead.
The Vulcans soon regretted missed opportunities early against Regan (8-1). The Mount Olive left-hander coaxed three double plays from California (Pa.), including twice with the bases loaded. After allowing the only run the visitors scored on the day, Regan settled down and retired the next 10 batters.
The Trojans took advantage to tack on four runs in the sixth. Three consecutive two-out hits were the difference. Reitano and Escalante singled and Berry doubled to go along with a sacrifice fly from Bryan Dunlavey. Mount Olive added another insurance run in the eighth when Reitano blasted what appeared to be his second home run of the game. When runners passed each other on the basepaths, however, Reitano was forced to settle for a single.
Regan finished with a seven-hitter, striking out seven.
In the nightcap, Dillon tossed a three-hit shutout to improve to 7-1 on the season and stretch Mount Olive's winning streak to eight.
Only once did Dillon allow more than one baserunner in an inning, and no Vulcans passed second base. He retired the final eight batters he faced.
Offensively, Mount Olive (30-4) got all the offense it needed in the bottom of the first. Matt Petrone and Reitano led off with doubles, then one out later, Berry singled home a run and Orrison added a two-run single for a 4-0 lead.
Petrone and Berry each had three hits in game two.
The teams conclude their three-game series Saturday with a single game beginning at noon.