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Niagara's baseball team clinched third seed in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference playoffs with a regular season-ending 5-3 victory at Canisius Sunday.

Canisius had the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth but Chris Cerchie struck out John Cicero to earn the save. Niagara starter Sean Haggerty got the win after allowing two runs and four hits in five innings.

Vince Ircandia, Mark Bomar and Mike Alati drove in runs for NU (26-23, 16-10), which advances to the playoffs Thursday at 7 p.m. against Marist at Fishkill. Canisius finishes 4-38-1, 3-23.

Elsewhere in college baseball, Erie Community College stayed alive in the National Junior College Athletic Association Division III World Series with a 7-3 losers-bracket victory over Montgomery College-Germantown (Md.) at Dwyer Stadium in Batavia.

Carl Aquila Jr. (St. Mary's of Lancaster) went 2 for 3 with a double and two RBIs. Jason Marble (Williamsville South) was 2 for 5. The Kats (33-14) play Columbus State (Ohio) today at noon in the eight-team, double-elimination series. ECC is 1-1 after losing to Gloucester (N.J.) Community College, 5-4.

The University at Buffalo finished its season by getting shut out, 10-0, at Mid-American Conference regular-season champion Kent State (35-16, 20-4). Kevin Nesteruk (West Seneca East) had two hits for UB. The Bulls finished 16-37, 5-21.

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