Bulls Snap Losing Streak Splitting Doubleheader with St. Bonaventure
BUFFALO, NY - The University at Buffalo baseball team split a non-conference doubleheader with St. Bonaventure on Tuesday afternoon at Amherst Audubon Field. The Bulls fell to the Bonnies, 5-4, in the opener, rebounding in the nightcap with a 12-2 victory to snap a four-game losing streak. In the opener, senior Brad Agustin scored his 137th career run to become the new all-time career leader for runs scored, surpassing former Bull and Major League Baseball draftee Joe Mihalics.
The Bulls took a 2-1 lead in the opener after the first complete inning. Leading off with a double off the first pitch of the contest, Agustin later scored his 137th career run to become the UB all-time career runs leader off a base hit by senior Bobby Pizzuto followed by a throwing error by the Bonnies' Nick Brennen. On the next play, Pizzuto would cross the plate off the Bonnies' second error of inning to give Buffalo a 2-1 lead.
With runners at the corners in the bottom of the fourth, senior Adam Skonieczki crossed the plate to give Buffalo a 3-2 lead off a ground out to first.
In the top of the sixth, the Bonnies' scored three runs to take a 5-3 lead.
Buffalo added a run in the bottom of the sixth off a sacrifice fly by junior David Neff, driving in Skonieczki for his second run in the opener.
Skonieczki and Agustin each went 2-for-2 with senior shortstop Jacob Rosenbeck going 2-for-3.
Starter Brian Pullyblank (1-2) recorded the loss for the Bulls in 6.0 innings of work, striking out four batters.
In the nightcap, the Bulls finished with 18 total hits to the Bonnies' three hits. UB managed to score in the first five innings, including six runs in the bottom of the fourth en route to winning the nightcap, 12-2.
UB opened the scoring off a two-RBI base hit by Skonieczki, driving in Agustin and Pizzuto to take a 2-0 lead. The Bulls recorded three stolen bases in the opening inning with Agustin, Pizzuto and Skonieczki swiping a bag each.
Freshman third baseman Ryan Tulloch recorded his first career hit, an RBI single to extend the Bulls' lead to 3-0 in the second inning.
Buffalo would extend its lead to 5-0 in the bottom of the third with a pair of runs. Senior first baseman Rob Lawler drilled an RBI single to center, scoring Skonieczki. UB's second run came off a throwing error to first base by the Bonnies' shortstop Jesse Bosnik, scoring Rosenbeck.
The Bonnies managed to score a pair of runs in the top of the fourth to cut into the Bulls' lead, 5-2.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Bulls came right back with six runs off four hits including two St. Bonaventure errors to further their lead to 11-2. With Skonieczki and Rosenbeck on second and third, Tulloch drove in both off a base hit up the middle to give the Bulls a 9-2 lead. A few batters later, Pizzuto followed with a two-RBI base hit up the middle to extend UB's lead to 11-2.
The combined pitching effort of starter Kevin Crumb and reliever Jeff Thompson led the Bulls to victory. In 3.1 innings of relief work, Thompson (2-0) recorded the victory for the Bulls, allowing no runs and only one hit while striking out four batters. As the starter, Crumb struck out a batter, allowing only two hits in 3.2 innings of work.
Lawler and Pizzuto recorded three hits with Pizzuto going 3-for-3, including two RBIs. Lawler and Tulloch tied for a game high three RBIs.
Buffalo (13-15, 3-6 MAC) remains in Big Four action when they travel to Niagara to face the Purple Eagles on Wednesday, April 14 beginning at 3:00 pm.