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NU baseball takes on Monmouth this weekend


NIAGARA UNIV. -- The Purple Eagles baseball team heads to Monmouth for a three-game series April 22-23 and looks to reclaim the top spot in the MAAC. All three games will be broadcast live on ESPN3.

Sophomore shortstop Greg Cullen leads the Purple Eagles at the plate. He has a team-best 45 hits, .366 batting average and .504 slugging percentage. Cullen and freshman first baseman Peter Battaglia led the team in RBI with 26. Tanner Kirwer, a junior outfielder, has a team-high 30 runs scored, 18 doubles and 17 stolen bases. On the mound, redshirt-junior Cody Eckerson (4-1) has struck out 34 batters in 36.0 innings pitched and has an ERA of 1.50. Senior Daniel Procopio (4-2) leads the Niagara pitching staff in strikeouts with 57. Freshman Matthew Brash is undefeated on the mound (5-0) and has pitched a team-high 47.0 innings. With their 7-5 conference record, the Purple Eagles are third in the MAAC standings.

Senior infielder Shaine Hughes leads the Hawks with 45 hits, 28 runs scored and a .363 batting average. Dan Shea, a senior outfielder, has a team-high 32 RBI and a team-best .629 slugging percentage. On the mound, sophomore Joe Molettiere (1-3) leads the Monmouth pitching staff with 36 strikeouts. He has an ERA of 5.03. Sophomore Jordan McCrum (3-3) has struck out 28 batters in a team-high 44.2 innings pitched.

The Purple Eagles will play a single game with crosstown rival Canisius on Wednesday, April 26 at 4:00 p.m. The game will be held at Sal Maglie Stadium, the site of the 2017 MAAC Baseball Championships, in Niagara Falls.