Niagara Gazette — Niagara’s defense came up big in the eighth. With one out, Olean’s Johnson singled to center to load the bases. Base runner Samuel Kysor looked tempted to try for home, but a strong throw from center fielder Lang to home plate kept Kysor at third.
The Power then pulled off a double play to end the inning, starting with Gabriel Sevigny snaring the ball at second. After Sevigny flicked the ball to Visconti for the force out at second, Visconti got the ball to first in time for the third out.
Niagara’s Zach Verner, who overcame a less-than-stellar performance to save Niagara’s 2-1 win over Syracuse on Thursday, came in to the game in the top of the ninth and was much more sharp, retiring three straight batters, striking one of them out. After his teammates came through in the bottom of the ninth, he was awarded the win.
Raspler recorded both a blown save and the loss.
Leading up to the season opener, the Power’s coaching staff and management were concerned about what they felt was last year’s lack of team cohesion in times of adversity. They’ve shown hints already that this year’s team is much more closely bonded.
“For sure, on and off the field,” said left fielder and catcher Jack Trotman, who hails from nearby East Amherst. “We’re great buddies already and, coming from all different parts of the country, not knowing anybody, you get some guys together and… it’s a good team.”
The Oilers, who fell to 1-4 on the season, host the Power this afternoon at 3 p.m. in the third and final meeting in a three-game series which began Friday night with Niagara’s 14-11 win in 11 innings.