(Northboro, Mass.) With the sun shining and the temperatures sitting in the mid-60s, it was a perfect day for the 2017 Rivier University Baseball season to begin. However, the Falcons of Fisher College proved to be a little too much to handle in the season opener as Fisher topped the Raiders, 12-3. Fisher College, a NAIA school out of Boston, improves to 7-2 on their season while Rivier sits at just 0-1.
The Falcons scored first in the home half of the first frame as junior Cody Mercier (Salem, Mass.) crossed the plate on a sacrifice fly from senior Kyle Anulao (Peoria, Ariz.). Fisher then plated two more runs on junior Haydell Alicea's (Carolina, P.R.) double in the second and a single tally in the fourth before exploding for eight runs in the fifth inning.
Rivier's bullpen finished the day with 3.1 innings allowing just one run. Senior Drew Neely (Lakeland, Fla.) got the start on the mound and went 4.2 innings allowing eleven runs (nine earned) on eleven hits while striking out one and issuing two walks.
At the plate, junior Jonathan De La Cruz (Haverhill, Mass.) knocked in the first run of the season as he went 1-for-4 with a RBI and stolen base while classmate Tyler Ferdinand (Middleboro, Mass.) finished 1-for-3 with a sac fly RBI and stolen base. Neely was the other Raider to record a base hit in his 1-for-2 day at the plate.
Fisher sophomore Reynaldo Moreta (Boston, Mass.) was the offensive star as he went 2-for-5 with a two-run home run to deep left and Alicea plated three runs on his 2-for-3 day. Anulao and freshman Jaime Villafane (San Juan, P.R.) also collected two hits each for the Falcons. Junior Kevin Bongiovanni (Queens, N.Y.) was awarded the win as he pitched a scoreless fifth inning. Sophomore Yamil Delgado (Caguas, P.R.) started and went four innings allowing just one hit.
Rivier will have about ten days before their next contest which will be in Fort Myers, Fla. on Sunday, March 5 against Swarthmore College. Fisher, meanwhile, will travel this weekend to just outside of Philadelphia, Pa. for a four game set with Penn State – Brandywine.