Offensive struggles continue as Huskies fall to Xavier


Tim Dodge

Junior infielder and outfielder Andrew Smart (27) takes a practice swing while on-deck during NIU Baseball’s home opener for the season. (Tim Dodge | Northern Star)

By Alex Crowe, Assistant Sports Editor

DeKALB – A five-run first inning gave Xavier University all the offense it needed in its three-game series-opening victory over NIU baseball Friday by a final score of 8-3. 

The Huskies (5-19, 2-7 MAC) have now lost four of their last five games and gave Xavier (14-12, 0-0 Big East) its fourth straight win.  


Huskie sophomore pitcher Mason Ruh started the game on the mound for NIU and struggled early. Before Ruh could record more than one out, Xavier plated five runs, including a three-run home run by Xavier sophomore pitcher Carter Hendrickson.

Ruh only lasted three innings for the Huskies, being pulled in favor of junior pitcher Dominic Hann. Ruh gave up six runs on seven hits in his outing.

Hann pitched the remainder of the game for NIU, holding Xavier’s offense to just two runs in the final five innings on three hits. 


While Hann limited Xavier’s offense after the third inning, the Huskie offense was unable to stage a comeback. NIU hitters mustered just three runs on seven hits, highlighted by a solo home run from junior infielder and outfielder Andrew Smart in the seventh inning. 

Xavier senior starting pitcher Ethan Bosacker limited the Huskies to just three hits and one run in five innings of work. The only run allowed by Bosacker was an RBI (runs batted in) single by sophomore catcher Kaden Kosobucki in the second inning. 

NIU’s bats showed signs of life in the seventh inning. Smart’s solo home run and an RBI single off the bat of junior infielder Andre Demetral got NIU within five runs of the lead. Demetral’s RBI was the only offense the Huskies found for the remainder of the game. 

Junior infielders Aaron Harper and Jake Nelson and senior outfielder Malik Peters also recorded hits for NIU. 


Hendrickson’s home run capped off a strong start for Xavier, who jumped out to a 5-0 lead. Kosobucki got a run back for NIU on an RBI single in the second. 

A home run by senior outfielder and first baseman Tyler DeMartino in the third inning and another by graduate infielder Jack Housinger in the sixth inning got Xavier out to an 8-1 lead. 

Smart’s home run and Demetral’s RBI in the seventh got the score to 8-3, but that was as close as NIU got. Xavier senior pitcher Creighton Hansen shut down NIU in the final two innings to seal the 8-3 win.


The Huskies look to even the weekend series with Xavier at noon Saturday in Cincinnati. Live stats will be available on SideArm Stats