The Notre Dame Fighting Irish baseball team took to the road this past weekend for an ACC series against the Pittsburgh Panthers. The first game of the series Friday night was postponed due to weather. The Irish dropped the first game of the doubleheader Saturday before the second game was suspended in the eighth inning again because of weather.
Notre Dame won both games Sunday, including finishing the win from Saturday’s suspended game, to take the series on the road. In their midweek game against the Valparaiso Crusaders, Notre Dame came from behind at home to win their third consecutive game.
Game 1: Notre Dame 2 (14-22, 8-11) - Pittsburgh 4 (12-25, 4-15)
Both teams started slowly early Saturday, as there was no score through the first six innings. Notre Dame opened the scoring in the top of the seventh when Daniel Jung hit a sacrifice fly with the bases loaded that scored Niko Kavadas. The Irish added a second run in the inning when Carter Putz grounded out, scoring Jack Zyska.
Pittsburgh answered in the bottom half of the inning when Kyle Hess hit an RBI double, cutting the Irish lead in half. Pittsburgh did most of their damage in the eighth inning though, loading the bases before scoring three runs for a 4-2 lead. Notre Dame couldn’t come back in the ninth and lost game one.
W: Chase Smith, PITT (2-5)
L: Tommy Sheehan, ND (5-4)
Game 2: Notre Dame 9 (15-22, 9-11) - Pittsburgh 0 (12-26, 4-16)
Notre Dame got things going again in game two, this time waiting until only the third inning. Zack Prajzner hit an RBI single to score Jared Miller and put the Irish up 1-0. Notre Dame added a second run in the fourth on an RBI double from Jack Alexander.
It was the fifth inning though that Notre Dame broke the game open. With the bases loaded and one out, Daniel Jung connected for his first career grand slam. Later in the inning Jack Alexander drove in his second BRI of the game with a single and the rout was on.
TOP 5 | GRAND SLAM DANIEL JUNG!!!— Notre Dame Baseball (@NDBaseball) April 20, 2019
He hammered the pitch to right field over the wall for his third home run of the season and his first career grand slam!#GoIrish #PassTheShillelagh
ND 6, UP 0 pic.twitter.com/i1opFStugH
Notre Dame added another run each in the sixth and seventh innings for a 9-0 lead before the game was suspended in the eighth inning because of weather. Zack Martin took the mound for Notre Dame in the resumed game on Sunday and threw 1.2 scoreless innings to end the game.
W: Cameron Junker, ND (2-2)
L: Dan Hammer, PITT (2-5)
Game 3: Notre Dame 4 (16-22, 10-11) - Pittsburgh 1 (12-27, 4-17)
In the rubber match, Pittsburgh scored first for the first time in the series when Zac MacLaren drove in a run with two outs in the second inning. Notre Dame tied the game in the top of the third when Zack Prajzner hit the first home run of his career.
MID 3 | IT IS WAY OUT OF HERE!!— Notre Dame Baseball (@NDBaseball) April 21, 2019
Zack Prajzner ropes his first career home run over the wall in left and the Irish tie the game!#GoIrish #PassTheShillelagh
ND 1, UP 1 pic.twitter.com/EqTeyQ7lPn
Carter Putz drove in Notre Dame‘s second run in the fifthe inning before coming around to score himself on a sacrifice bunt by Zack Prajzner. The Irish added their fourth and final run of the game in the sixth when Niko Kavadas scored on a sacrifice fly from Daniel Jung.
Cameron Brown threw 7.1 innings for Notre Dame, striking out 9 and allowing only 1 run. Tommy Vail came on for Brown in the eighth and got the final five outs of the game to give Notre Dame the series win.
W: Cameron Brown, ND (2-5)
L: Billy Corcoran, PITT (1-5)
S: Tommy Vail, ND (3)
Game 4: Notre Dame 4 (17-22) - Valparaiso 3 (8-27)
Valparaiso opened the scoring on Tuesday in the fourth inning. A bases loaded walk and a sacrifice fly gave the Crusaders a 2-0 lead. They added a run in the fifth for a 3-0 lead.
Notre Dame answered in the bottom of the fifth inning. Niko Kavadas drove in two runs with a double to bring the Irish within one. Later in the inning, Eric Gilgenbach hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game at three.
In the seventh inning, Spencer Myers reached base for Notre Dame on an error. Niko Kavadas then singled to score Myers and give Notre Dame the lead for the first time in the game. Joe Boyle came in to pitch for Notre Dame, and he threw two scoreless innings in the eighth and ninth to seal the win for the Irish.
W: Evan Tenuta, ND (1-0)
L: Montana Quigley, VAL (0-2)
S: Joe Boyle, ND (2)
Notre Dame returns home and will face the N.C. State Wolfpack this weekend in their annual Strikeout ALS Weekend. Notre Dame will be accepting donations at the games this weekend to benefit the Pete Frates #3 Fund.