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XU baseball excels in home opener

By Danny O'malley
On March 21, 2012

This past weekend the Xavier University men's baseball team played their home opener here at Hayden field against the Toledo Rockets. They played three games over the weekend, and Xavier won two of them.
Friday's game was a pitching duel, which Xavier won 1-0. The Musketeers also won Saturday's outing by a score of 3-2 while Toledo won Sunday's game defeating
Xavier 3-1.
Redshirt sophomore pitcher Vinny Nittoli was 0-3 before coming
into Friday's game and looking for his first victory of the season. After being Xavier's ace last season,
he has struggled so far this year but came out with an incredible
performance when he pitched six innings and gave up three hits, but no earned runs.
Junior left fielder Daniel Rod went 2-4 and had the lone RBI of the game when he hit a clutch, two-out single in the third inning
to score sophomore Michael Moore.
Junior pitcher Jon Richard performed exceptionally during Saturday's game. He was able to go 7 2/3 innings and gave up eight hits with only two earned runs.
Toledo accumulated 11 hits throughout the game but only tallied
two runs by the end of nine innings thanks to great defense by the Xavier Musketeers.
After battline back and forth, the score was tied at 2-2 at the end of the ninth. The game lasted all the way until the 12th inning when Xavier junior Patrick Paligraf hit a sacrifice fly allowing Moore to score the go ahead run to allow Xavier to win the contest.
Sunday's game was Xavier's only loss where redshirt junior Tyler Koors started. He lasted five innings before being pulled, and he gave up six hits and two earned runs.
Sophomore Tres Eberhardt and Nittoli, who was batting as a designated hitter, both were able to go 2-4 in this game and accounted for four of Xavier's six hits.
"We are swinging at bad pitches and getting ourselves out," head coach Scott Googins said.
This could be the cause for the lack of offense for Xavier, but Googins also mentioned that he was extremely impressed with all of the pitching for the Musketeers over the weekend.
The men's baseball team will be traveling out of town this week to face Miami of Ohio and Western Illinois.


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