The #4 ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish baseball team finished out their homestand today with a game against the Michigan Wolverines. Notre Dame’s offense came to play from the beginning of the game, scoring 14 runs and winning their ninth game in a row. Notre Dame now has a win over a rival to go with their current win streak in their only game against Michigan on the season.
Notre Dame 14 (21-5) - Michigan 5 (17-15)
Win: Jackson Dennies, ND (1-0)
Loss: Walker Cleveland, UM (1-3)
In the very beginning of the game Michigan looked like the team that was poised to score early and often, loading the bases in both the first and second innings. Notre Dame pitched out of both jams though without allowing a single run.
In the bottom of the second inning the Irish were the team to strike first, bringing home five runs to get the rout started. Notre Dame earned four straight walks to score their first of the game. Spencer Myers then came up to the plate and drove the ball over the wall in left field for his first career grand slam.
Michigan got two runs of their own in the top of the fourth inning to cut the lead to three runs, but Notre Dame was back at it in the bottom half of the inning. Carter Putz drove in the first run, singling home Zack Prajzner. Notre Dame then loaded the bases and Jack Zyska was hit by a pitch, scoring Jack Brannigan. Brooks Coetzee then came up and singled, driving in Ryan Cole and Carter Putz. Notre Dame added another in the sixth to reach double digits when Zyska doubled to bring home Cole.
With the Irish leading 10-2, Michigan scored three runs in the eighth inning, but Notre Dame answered again immediately, scoring four runs of their own in the bottom of the inning. Brooks Coetzee singled to drive in his third run of the game. Prajzner followed with a single of his own, driving in his second and third runs. Brannigan followed with his own single to drive in Prajzner and Notre Dame led 14-5. Michigan couldn’t get anything across in the ninth inning and the Irish held on for the win.
Jack Findlay started the game for Notre Dame and while he didn’t allow a run he only lasted 1.2 innings. Notre Dame used four relievers to finish out the game with Aidan Tyrell going the longest at 2.2 innings. Jackson Dennies won his first career game and Radek Birkholz threw the last 1.1 innings to close out the win.
Notre Dame now heads back out on the road, traveling to Durham, NC for an ACC series with the Duke Blue Devils. Duke currently sits last in the ACC Coastal division with a 13-20 record overall and 3-12 in conference play. Notre Dame will be looking to take their win streak to double digits and improve their standing in the ACC Atlantic where they are second, a game behind the Louisville Cardinals.