Bulls Split with Purple Eagles
BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo softball team hosted a mid-week doubleheader against Niagara this afternoon, losing game one, 7-3, but bouncing back to take game two, 6-4. Freshman Alyssa Ward led the Bulls on the day, batting .667 with two doubles and three RBIs.
The Bulls led for most of game one, but gave up six unanswered runs in the top of the seventh to spoil the win. The Bulls got on the board in the bottom of the first inning, withKristin Waldron singling to shortstop and moving to second on a sacrifice bunt fromJessica Griffin. Ward hit the RBI single to left field to give Buffalo the score. The Bulls increased their lead in the bottom of the third inning, as the play once again started with a power hit from Waldron, who tripled to left center. The triple was her fifth of the season, which ties her school record for most triples in a single season. Griffin grounded out to shortstop on the next play, but earned the RBI in the process. In the bottom of the fifth inning, a hit from both Waldron and Griffin, plus a Niagara error allowed the Bulls to load the bases. Taylor Franich singled through the left side to send home the run, ultimately increasing the Buffalo lead, however the Buffalo defense couldn't hold on, as Niagara tallied seven runs in the final two innings to let the game slip away.
The Bulls came out strong in game two, scoring three runs in the first inning, with Ward collecting two RBIs off a double to right center and Franich earning the third RBI of the inning, after Ashley Bertot singled and Waldron was hit by the pitch to put two runners on. Both runners successfully stole a base to put them in scoring position. Bertot's stolen base was her 14th of the season, which puts her in the fourth spot for single season stolen bases. The Bulls put up two more runs in the bottom of the second with Candice Sheehan, Bertot and Griffin all singling, with Griffin earning an RBI, while Bertot capitalized on a Niagara error to score an unearned run, to take a 5-0 lead. Niagara came back with a pair of runs of their own in the top of the third, but the Bulls scored an insurance run in the bottom of the fourth. Sheehan doubled and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt from Bertot. Waldron grounded out, but earned the RBI as Sheehan scored. Niagara put up a fight, scoring a run in the top of the fifth and sixth innings, but the Buffalo defense held on for the win.
Diaz pitched the complete game, picking up her third win of the season, striking out nine batters in seven innings of work.
The Bulls will head out on their final road trip of the season to take on MAC rivals Akron and Ohio this weekend. Action starts Friday, April 23 at 1:00 pm at Akron's Lee R. Jackson Field.