Niagara Gazette — NIAGARA FALLS — The first meeting between two of the top baseball programs in the Niagara Frontier League was much sloppier than anticipated Wednesday evening when the Grand Island Vikings and the Niagara Falls Wolverines squared off at Niagara Falls High School’s brand-new athletic complex.
Conditions were less-than-perfect, though the new turf field tempered much of what Mother Nature attempted to dole out as the Wolverines rode warmer bats and better defense to an early-season 8-3 win.
Niagara Falls (5-1, 4-0 NFL) jumped on GI starter Josh Barrett early, tallying three runs in the bottom of the first. Chris Cardona led off with a walk, followed by a David Yarger bunt single. The pair advanced on a passed ball before Cardona scored on an RBI single from Mike Colosi.
With runners on second and third, Mike Eagler delivered an early blow, knocking a two-out, two-RBI single to open up a 3-0 lead.
The Vikings (2-2, 1-2 NFL) scored an unearned run off Colosi in the top of the third, but the Wolverines answered with a pair.
Colosi reached on an error, followed by a Justin Beyer single. Taylor Huntsman ripped an RBI single that scored Colosi and Eagler followed with a run-scoring groundout for his third RBI of the game.
Barrett his a sacrifice fly in the fifth to cut the NF lead to 5-2, but again Niagara Falls responded with a crooked number.
Yarger reached on an error, Beyer singled and senior Joey D’Angelo drove in Yarger. D’Angelo eventually scored on a passed ball and Huntsman added the eighth run on an error.
“Barrett threw pretty well,” GI coach Dean Santorio said. “He threw 33 pitches in the first inning and gave up a few unearned runs that really hurt.”
Ben Goc went 2 for 3 for the Vikings, while normal ace Quinn Corrao went 1 for 3 with two runs scored. Corrao was a hard-luck 1-0 loser against Lewiston-Porter on Monday.