The Dayton Flyers tied the game in the seventh inning and then won their Atlantic 10 Conference baseball tournament opener with three runs in the eighth, beating Rhode Island 5-2 on Wednesday at Fordham University.
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Eddie Pursinger, who entered the game as a defensive replacement in the top of the eighth, hit a bases-loaded double to break the tie in the bottom of the inning.
Bellefontaine grad Tyler Jones held the No. 6 seed Rams (23-28) scoreless in the final 4 2/3 innings to earn the victory.
Dayton, the No. 3 seed, will play No. 2 seed Davidson (27-19) at 10 a.m. Thursday in the second round of the winner’s bracket. It is a double-elimination tournament. Davidson beat No. 7 seed Saint Louis (25-27) 2-0 on Wednesday.
If Dayton (30-24) wins Thursday, it will play No. 1 seed Virginia Commonwealth, No. 4 Fordham or No. 5 Richmond at noon Friday. If Dayton loses Thursday, it will move to the loser’s bracket and play its third game at 5 p.m. Thursday.
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Dayton trailed Rhode Island twice. A bunt by Connor Echols scored Mitchell Garrity with the tying run in the third inning. Garrity scored on a wild throw to first base.
In the seventh, Takahiro Yamada singled to score Connor Wilson from second, tying the game at 2-2.
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