March 22, 2008
Loudonville, N.Y. - The Siena baseball team split their home and MAAC opening doubleheader against the Niagara Purple Eagles this afternoon at Siena Field. Niagara (8-7, 1-1) took the first game by a count of 12-4 with the Saints (2-13, 1-1) earning the split in the second game, 7-4.
In Game One, Niagara harbored a 5-4 lead entering the eighth before exploding for six runs in the frame to break the game wide open. Purple Eagles right fielder Fran Kurnik capped the inning with a grand slam.
Kurnik posted three hits and drove in five runs, while teammates Tim Alberts and Harrison Harber each knocked in three. Jacob Willis paced the Saints with a pair of hits.
In the nightcap, the Saints utilized several big innings scoring twice in the second, three times in the third and two more in the fifth to capture the win in seven innings.
Junior southpaw Matt Moberg was steady on the mound, hurling five strong innings in securing his first win of the year, while senior Ryan King pitched a pair of scoreless innings to pick up his first save.
Left fielder Nick Messinger was the offensive hero as he swatted the eventual game-winning three run homer in the third. Catcher Phil Cahill added a two run single in the fifth to put the game away.
The Saints and Purple Eagles will engage in the rubber match of the series on Easter Sunday. First pitch is slated for 12 noon from Siena Field.