MOUNT OLIVE, NC – Junior Evan Barnes doubled twice and singled twice to lead a 22-hit attack as Florida Southern cruised past Mount Olive 14-3 in game one of a doubleheader here Saturday at Scarborough Field.
Barnes was one of seven Moccasins with two or more hits as Florida Southern posted the most base hits since collecting 24 in a 26-13 win over Warner on March 17 of last season.
In addition to Barnes, Sam Machonis, Mitch Reeves, Dominic Brugnoni and Shawn Sanders all had three hits a piece while Jason Sierra and Walker Burgess both had two hits each. In all, the second through seventh batters were a combined 20-of-37 at the plate with 12 runs scored and 12 runs batted in.
This is the fourth straight game with double-digits runs scored for the 7-2 Moccasins, who have now won five straight. It is also the fifth consecutive game in which Florida Southern has had 10 or more hits.
Florida Southern started the game with Logan Browning doubling and later scoring on a sacrifice fly by Mitch Reeves for a quick 1-0 lead in the top of the first, but Mount Olive came back in bottom of the frame with a run off Moccasin starter Ben Richardson (3-0).
Sanders hit a one-out single in the second and would later scored on a single by Burgess to give the lead back to the Moccasins. Florida Southern opened the game up with three runs in the top of the fourth on RBI singles from Pablo Cabrera, Machonis, and Reeves for a 5-1 margin.
Sierra gave the Moccasins a nice cushion with a three-run homer in the top of the sixth while Mount Olive pushed across a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame.
It was deuces wild for Florida Southern after that, scoring two runs in each of the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings, the last two coming on a Reeves homer and a Brugnoni RBI-double.
Reeves would leave after six innings, holding the Trojans to three runs on five hits with four strikeouts. Tyler Knowles came on to start the seventh and retired nine of the ten batters he faced, three on strike outs, while allowing only one base runner on a hit batsmen, to pick up his first save of the season.