DEKALB, IL – The University at Buffalo baseball team allowed their most runs of the season in the rubber match of their three-game series to the Northern Illinois Huskies on Sunday afternoon, falling 17-7 on the road. With the loss, the Bulls fell to 12-23 overall and 5-10 in MAC play.
The Huskies jumped out to the quick 4-0 lead in the opening inning and never looked back on Sunday. NIU strung together four straight singles and mixed in a couple walks as they were able to notch four runs on Buffalo starting pitcher Shawn Dubin in the opening inning.
After a scoreless top of the second inning for the Bulls, the Huskies extended their lead to 7-0 as they were able to score three runs. The Huskies gathered four singles once again in the inning to score three runs and put the game out of reach.
NIU added another three-run inning in the fourth and added a single run in the sixth to make the score 11-0 in favor of the home team. Buffalo was able to get two runners on in the seventh but failed to score as Ben Vey and Brian Wasilewski each singled to left field.
UB finally broke through for four runs in the eighth inning as Bobby Sheppard and Brian Dudek worked walks before Mike Abrunzo earned his third single of the game to load the bases. Vinny Mallaro earned his 27th RBI of the season as he singled to left field to score Sheppard. Vey then stepped in and recorded a RBI as he reached first on an error by the third baseman before Billy Hartford reached on a fielder's choice and advanced to second on a throwing error by the second baseman to score Abrunzo and Mallaro.
The Huskies responded with a six-run inning in the bottom half of the eighth to pull away before Mallaro notched a 2-RBI double in the top of the ninth to plate Eddie Edwards III and Abrunzo. Don Kilian then singled home Mallaro for his fourth RBI of the season, making the final score 17-7 in favor of the Huskies.
Dubin had his worst start as a Bull as he went 2.0 innings and allowed eight hits and seven runs while Blair Lakso came in and pitched 3.0 innings of relief, allowing just two hits and one run in the game.
Mike Abrunzo was the lone UB player to notch a multi-hit game as he finished 4-for-5 with two runs scored while Mallaro finished 2-for-5 with a double, three RBI and a run scored in the loss. The four-hit effort for Abrunzo was the second four-hit game of his career.
The Bulls will return to the diamond on Tuesday afternoon as they host St. Bonaventure at Amherst Audobon Field in a doubleheader. The first game of the doubleheader will begin at 2:00 pm and game two will begin approximately a half hour after the completion of the first game.