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NU baseball splits with MAAC-leading Fairfield


NIAGARA UNIV. -- The Niagara baseball team split a doubleheader with MAAC-leading Fairfield on Saturday.

Game 1: Niagara 11, Fairfield 7

The Purple Eagles (20-18, 10-8 MAAC) started strong in game one; in the bottom of the first, Trevor McCauley doubled to left field, scoring Tanner Kirwer and Darian Blanks to put NU up, 2-0, on the Stags (24-17, 11-4 MAAC). In the bottom of the second, with two runners on base, Kirwer hit a three-run homerun, his second homer of the season, to put the Purple Eagles ahead 5-0. Battaglia hit a two-run homer, his second homerun of the series, to give Niagara a comfortable 7-0 lead going into the third inning. The Stags got on the board in the top of the third, scoring twice, but Wyatt Olson hit NU's third homerun of the game in the bottom of the third to keep the Purple Eagles in the lead, 8-2.
An RBI double from Fairfield's Jack Gethings in the top of the fourth halved Niagara's lead, 8-4, but the Purple Eagles were undaunted. In the bottom of the sixth, Battaglia had an RBI double and Philippe Langlois had an RBI single to extend Niagara's lead, 11-4. Despite a three-run homerun from the Stags in the top of the seventh, the Purple Eagles came away with the 11-7 victory over the defending MAAC champions. Battaglia led the Purple Eagles with four RBI and Greg Cullen had a team-high three hits. Kirwer had a team-high three runs scored and also had three RBI and two hits.
Daniel Procopio improved to 6-2 on the season. He fanned two batters in 6.0 innings pitched.

Game 2: Fairfield 4, Niagara 1

The Stags took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning and scored twice more in the top of the top of the fourth to take a 4-0 advantage. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Langlois hit the first homerun of his career, but it was not enough the overcome the Stags. Langlois led NU with one RBI and Langlois, Kirwer, Cullen and Michael Gabriele each had one hit. On the mound, Cody Eckerson (4-2) struck out four batters and allowed two earned runs in 5.0 innings pitched.

The Purple Eagles are back in action when they had to Buffalo for a doubleheader with the Bulls on Tuesday, May 2 starting at 2:00 p.m.