Albany, N.Y. - Nolan Gaige recorded an RBI triple to lead UAlbany to a 5-3 win over Hartford in the nightcap of an America East Conference baseball doubleheader on Friday afternoon at Varsity Field. The Hawks posted a 3-2 victory in the first game of the day, behind a 2-of-3 performance by left fielder Andy Drexel. The Great Danes move to 21-30-1 overall, and stand in second place in the league standings with a 15-8 record.
UAlbany scored first in game one, plating one run in the bottom of the first on an RBI single up the middle by Mike Tirri. The Great Danes used two hitless innings, along with three strikeouts, from starter Zach Kraham to hold the Hawks off the scoreboard until the third. Hartford plated two runs in the frame to take a one-run lead. Drexel knocked a single down the right field line, sending two runners home. The Hawks added a single run in the fifth, before UAlbany also scored in the bottom of the frame to cut the lead back to one run.
Hartford's two pitchers held UAlbany to three hits in the game, with Brian Hunter getting the win and Austin Barnes picking up the save. Kraham only faced seven batters in his two innings of work, while Matt Dybus picked up the loss after allowing all three runs to score, despite fanning two. Greg Lutton finished out the game for the Great Danes, striking out one and scattering three hits in 2.1 innings of work.
Hartford struck first in the second game, getting single runs in each of the first two innings. However, UAlbany scored four times in the bottom of the third to take the 4-2 lead. Gaige smacked a triple to score Joey Tracy, and came home on a fielding error that put D.J. Hoagboon on base. Pete DiResta singled up the middle to D.J. Hoagboon, before coming in for the fourth run of the inning on an RBI double by Tirri.
The Hawks attempted to stage a comeback in the seventh, but could only score one run, while the Great Danes put an insurance run on the board in the bottom of the inning to keep some distance on the scoreboard. Pinch runner Jeff Welsh stole both second and third, before coming home on an RBI single by Gordon Madej.
Kasciem Graham earned the win on the mound with a four-inning performance, as he scattered three hits and struck out three without issuing a walk or allowing a run. Ryan White tossed the final inning for the Great Danes, picking up the save.
UAlbany (21-30-1, AE 15-8) and Hartford (16-39, AE 7-16) will play the final game of the regular season on Saturday with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m. Prior to the start of the game, UAlbany will honor its eight graduating seniors.