Eagles Wallop Findlay, 18-3, To Earn In-Region Win

Eagles Wallop Findlay, 18-3, To Earn In-Region Win

The Ashland University baseball team racked up 19 hits, including nine for extra bases, and junior Alex Niecikowski drove in six runs as the Eagles pounded in-region opponent Findlay, 18-3, on Tuesday (April 17) at a frigid Donges Field.

With a game-time temperature sitting at 30 degrees and wind chills in the teens, the AU bats had no problem heating up.

Niecikowski's RBI single in the second inning opened the scoring and sophomore Alex Laikos' three-run homer to left field keyed a four-run rally in the third to give Ashland a 5-0 lead.

The Oilers (18-10) scored their only run off AU starter Devin Peters in the fourth inning before Ashland rallied for five runs apiece in the fifth and sixth innings.

Niecikowski roped a bases-clearing double in the fifth and junior Sam Hawley and freshman Austin Eifrid each drove in runs in the inning. Laikos, Niecikowski, Hawley and Eifrid all had RBI doubles in the sixth inning as Ashland took a 15-1 lead.

Eifrid had his third RBI hit of the game in the eighth inning as Ashland (23-11) capped their day with three runs in their final at-bat.

Peters (5-4) cruised through five innings to earn the win, needing just 57 pitches to strike out seven batters. He gave up five hits and did not walk a batter, giving up just one run as he was in total command on the mound. Sophomore Chance Hitchcock twirled three innings of one-hit ball in relief and used only 33 pitches.

UF starter Tyler Rendlesham (0-2) suffered the loss, allowing seven runs in 4 1/3 innings. He struck out five and walked three. 

Seven Eagles finished with multiple hits with Eifrid and Niecikowski each going 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Eifrid had three RBI. Laikos was 2-for-3 with a homer, a double, a walk, four RBI and three runs. Hawley also drove in a pair of runs.

The Eagles, who had their Wednesday game with Lake Erie postponed, will open a four-game series with Purdue Northwest on Friday (April 16) at 4 p.m. at Donges Field.