BUFFALO, NY - Following the main portion of its non-conference schedule, the Buffalo Bulls baseball team will open the home portion of the 2011 season Friday with a three-game series against Northern Illinois. Due to poor weather in the forecast, the team has announced several changes in the original schedule, including a move to St. Bonaventure.
The two teams will now play at McGraw-Jennings Field on the St. Bonaventure campus, and the series opener on Friday will be pushed back to a Saturday doubleheader. Now the first game will begin Saturday at 1 pm with game two starting right after.
Recently, the team was swept in the conference's opening weekend at Eastern Michigan. The team struggled offensively in the three games, batting only .202 and scoring only eight runs. For the season, though, Buffalo remains the premier offensive team in the conference, batting .310 as a team (compared to .290 by the next best team). Sophomore infielder Alex Baldock leads the way with a .391 batting average and ten doubles. Out of every player in the conference that has played in 20 or more games, Baldock ranks second in batting average and the ten doubles are tops in the MAC. The Bulls have also excelled on hitting the ball out of the park, with Eric Bryce and Tom Murphy tied for first in the conference with six home runs.
Northern Illinois enters the weekend with a 7-14 record (1-2 MAC). The Huskies rank outside the top five teams in every major statistical category but have won seven of the past 11 games. There hasn't been much pop in the lineup - the team has only six home runs - but four different players have 20 or more hits and infielder Jeff Zimmerman and outfielder Tom Kotis each have .333 batting averages for the year. On the mound, senior Zach Oates has started five games and has a 4.24 earned run average. Junior reliever Kyle Glancy has a 3.00 ERA in nine appearances with three saves.
Due to the site change, live stats will not be available for the weekend series.