The Notre Dame Fighting Irish baseball team entered the ACC Tournament as the #1 overall seed in the conference. After splitting their two pool play games though, they will not be advancing to the semifinals and will instead be looking towards their selection to the NCAA Tournament. Notre Dame was able to beat the Virginia Tech Hokies in their first game, but lost their second game to the Virginia Cavaliers for a 1-1 record. Because Virginia beat Virginia Tech in their matchup, the Cavaliers 2-0 record sees them advance.
Game 1: Notre Dame 8 - Virginia Tech 0
Win: Will Mercer, ND (3-2)
Loss: Jaison Heard, VT (3-4)
The first game started slow, with both teams scoreless until the fifth inning when Notre Dame finally broke through with Zack Prajzner scoring on a wild pitch. In the sixth inning, Jared Miller led off with a home run, followed by Brooks Coetzee and Spencer Myers scoring on a fielder’s choice and single respectively.
Miller was at it again in the seventh, driving in Jack Brannigan with a triple before scoring on a single from Coetzee. Notre Dame led 6-0 after seven innings and added two more runs in the ninth on a sacrifice fly and single. The Irish pitching trio of Will Mercer, Alex Rao, and were able to keep the Hokies off the board for an easy win for the Irish.
The Irish kept it rolling in their first game of the ACC Championship!!— Notre Dame Baseball (@NDBaseball) May 26, 2021
Check out all the highlights from the 8-0 shutout win over Virginia Tech!!#GoIrish x #Rally pic.twitter.com/v1KIVjBIPz
Game 2: Notre Dame 1 - Virginia 14
Win: Andrew Abbott, UVA (8-5)
Loss: John Michael Bertrand, ND (7-2)
This game was all Virginia from the beginning. The Cavaliers jumped on John Michael Bertrand in what was by far his worst outing of the year, hitting three home runs in a second inning where Bertrand failed to record an out. In total, Virginia brought home 14 runs over the nine innings. Notre Dame was able to get a run across in the bottom of the ninth on an RBI single from Danny Neri to score Alex Brait, but the game was decided long before that.
Notre Dame now waits to hear their fate for the NCAA Regionals on Selection Monday. The Irish are all but guaranteed their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2015 after their strong season, but they are still hoping to host a regional in South Bend. That will be determined Monday.