OLEAN, NY - The University at Buffalo baseball team captured its first conference home opening victory since 2002 by defeating Eastern Michigan, 5-2, in game one of Saturday afternoon's doubleheader at Fred Handler Park on the campus of St. Bonaventure. The Bulls fell in the nightcap, 7-2.
Due to unplayable field conditions at Buffalo's Amherst Audubon
Field, the Bulls were forced to move their Mid-American Conference
home opening series against Eastern Michigan to Fred Handler Park,
home of the St. Bonaventure Bonnies.
In the opener, starting pitcher Chaz Mye (3-2) recorded a career-high 10 strikeouts, striking out the first three batters he faced in the top of the first. Allowing only five hits in 8.1 innings of work, Mye's performance solidified the Bulls' victory. Closer Kevin Crumb finished off the Eagles' chance of a rally by recording the final two outs to collect his third save of the season. Crumb and Mye combined to allow only two runs off five hits.
The Bulls managed to score runs in four straight innings in the
opener en route to a 5-2 victory. Senior Charlie
Karstedt knocked in the first run of the contest in the bottom
of the second off an RBI double for a Buffalo 1-0 lead.
Facing two outs in the bottom of the third, senior Brad Cochrane drilled a solo shot to left field to break the 1-1 tie, giving the Bulls a 2-1 lead.
For the second time in the contest, Karstedt drove in senior Adam Skonieczki. With Skonieczki on first, Karstedt dropped another RBI double into deep right field to score the Bulls' third run.
In the top of the fifth, the Eagles pulled the game within one, 3-2, off a sacrifice fly.
The Bulls added insurance runs in the fifth and seventh innings. Off an Eagles' error at first, senior Brad Agustin scored in the bottom of the fifth for a 4-2 Bulls' lead. In the seventh, senior Rob Lawler sent an RBI double up the middle to close out the Bulls' scoring at five runs.
With a pair of Eagles on base in the top of the ninth, Crumb shut down any chance of an Eagles' rally on a force out at second.
Agustin, Karstedt, Skonieczki and senior Bobby Pizzuto each recorded a pair of hits. Cochrane and Karstedt tied for a game high two RBIs.
The Eagles used a six-run fifth inning to collect their first conference victory in the nightcap, splitting the doubleheader with the Bulls.
Facing a 7-0 deficit, Buffalo's chance at a ninth-inning rally came short. In the ninth, the Bulls managed to score a pair of runs off a two-RBI double by Pizzuto to deep right.
Pizzuto and Cochrane collected a pair of hits as Pizzuto recorded both RBIs.
In 4.1 innings of work, starter Pierre Miville-Deschenes (2-3) struck out seven batters to record the Bulls' nightcap loss.
The Bulls will face the Eagles in the series finale on Sunday, March 28 at Fred Handler Park with the first pitch set for 12:00 pm.