The Niagara Purple Eagles opened their 2010 season in Greensboro, NC today with a split of two games.
In an extra inning game against Cleveland State, Jen Hare gave Niagara a 1-0 lead with a homer in the 3rd inning, but it didn't last long. Cleveland State's Tess Sito (cousin, I believe, of Niagara's Kristin Sito) hit a solo homer of her own in the 4th to tie the game; then the Vikings scored another to go up 2-1. Niagara's Sito tied the game in the 5th inning after being driven home by a Kristin Kill two out single. Cleveland State's Lia Gordon hit a three run double in the 8th to win it for the Vikings 5-3.
The Purple Eagles had better luck in their second game, a 3-2 win over host UNC Greensboro. After falling behind 1-0, Niagara's Maggie McDonald tied the game with a homer in the bottom of the 1st. Niagara scored twice in the 3rd inning, on a double by Teresa Healy, who was driven home by Kristin Sito's single, and on a Greensboro error that allowed Jen Hare to score the eventual winning run. Cassie Stone then held Greensboro at bay for the complete game victory.
Niagara remains in Greensboro Saturday for a game against Sacred Heart. Then the Spartan Classic goes to a playoff format for the remaining games, and concludes Sunday with championship and consolation games.