Defensive Miscues Cost Bulls in Sweep
BUFFALO, NY - With gusts swirling around Amherst Audubon Field Tuesday afternoon, it was certainly a dream scenario for the two pitching staffs, but 10 combined errors over the two games by Buffalo and St. Bonaventure led to an ugly doubleheader, with the Bonnies taking both seven-inning games, 3-2 and 12-4.
In game one, the Bonnies jumped out to a 1-0 lead after two innings, but the Bulls answered in the bottom of the third. Matt Pollock led off with a single and moved to third on a single from Alex Baldock. Tom Murphy scored the speedy Pollock on a sacrifice fly to deep center field and Eric Bryce followed right after with a wind-defying double to left center field that scored Baldock all the way from first base to put UB ahead 2-1. The Bonnies got back ahead for good after scoring a run in the fourth and fifth.
As the bottom of the seventh arrived, the first two batters were set down in order, bringing up Matt Pollock. Pollock hit a soft grounder to the shortstop, who was playing back and was hurried to make the play. He overthrew first base and the Bulls were still alive. River McWilliams hit a first-pitch ground to second that was also misplayed for an error, putting the winning run at first. Incredibly, the bizarre inning would not ended in the next at-bat though, as the shortstop again misplayed a hit by Baldock that loaded the bases. With a red-hot Tom Murphy stepping in, there was yet another wild play. Murphy hit a grounder to the beleaguered shortstop one more time, and the throw appeared to pull the first baseman away from the bag to allow Pollock to score from third. After an appeal by the Bonaventure coaches, the head umpire reversed the call and Murphy was called out at first to end the game, 3-2. Michael Burke took the game one loss
After outhitting the Bonnies in game one, the Bulls struggled both on offense and defense in game two. Over the course of the game, five errors led to six unearned runs as the Bulls pitchers found little success pitching to contact. The Bonnies actually scored more runs than it had for hits (12 to 11) and also drew six walks.
After falling down 5-0 going to the bottom of the second inning, Tom Murphy reached base to lead off and was soon driven in by Daniel Scahill's single to right field. Bonas scored seven more unanswered runs before the Bulls were able to score again in the sixth. Jamie Jiron led off with a smoked double that went over the left fielder's head, and singles from Bryce and Jason Kanzler eventually scored him. An error by St. Bonaventure led to another Buffalo run and Michael Scarcello capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly. Freshman Cory Folk struggled in his three innings of work, allowing six runs (three earned).
Buffalo now stands a 7-23 (0-9 MAC) with another home series on tap. Friday will mark the beginning of a three-game series against Ball State. First pitch of game one is set for 3:00 pm.