BRIDGEPORT — History was made Sunday night, as the University of Bridgeport baseball team received an at-large bid to the NCAA Division II national championship East Regional. The bid marks the first NCAA appearance in the program’s history.

The Purple Knights will be the fifth seed in a seven-team regional that will be hosted by the top-seed Franklin Pierce in Rindge, N.H. The double-elimination tournament will take place from Thursday-May 23. A total of 56 teams will compete in the NCAA Division II championship.

Bridgeport will face the No. 4-seed Felician College of New Jersey (33-19), which received an automatic NCAA bid as the champions of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference. Game is is tentatively set for 11 a.m. on Thursday.

The Purple Knights, who were not ranked in any of the three NCAA East Regional Polls during the regular season, shot up to a five-seed in the tournament by reaching the championship game of the East Coast Conference tournament, where they lost to Dowling 3-2 on Sunday. UB went 4-2 on the week with all four wins coming over teams that will play in the East Regional (two wins over St. Thomas Aquinas and one each over Molloy and Dowling).

UB enters tournament play at 27-22-1.

Top-seed Franklin Pierce (45-6) received a bye on Thursday and will face the UB/Felician winner at 3 p.m. tentatively on Friday.

Following Thursday’s opening game, second-seed Southern New Hampshire, champions of the Northeast-10 Conference (45-5) will face No. 7 Molloy College (31-21) at 3 p.m., followed by an all-East Coast Conference game at 7 p.m. featuring No. 3 St. Thomas Aquinas College (35-15) and No. 6 Dowling College (27-23), the ECC champ.