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    Fighting Irish
    April 9, 1998

    Notre Dame-Rutgers Baseball Doubleheader Rained Out

    April 13 game vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee changed to doubleheader

    Bud Selig to throw out first ball at April 14 doubleheader vs. Manchester

    The Notre Dame baseball team's frustrating string of games cancelled due to weather continued Thursday, as a noon BIG EAST Conference doubleheader with Rutgers was cancelled at 2:45 p.m. due to rain that had lingered throughout the day.

    The Irish have seen 11 games cancelled due to rain or snow this season in five different states, with just three of those cancellations coming at home. The other cancelled games have been in New Orleans, La. (Feb. 15), San Antonio, Texas (3, March 12-14), Providence, R.I. (2, March 21) and Storrs, Conn. (2, March 22).

    Notre Dame next is scheduled to play host to Villanova in a BIG EAST doubleheader Saturday (noon start time). The Irish are expected to start Alex Shilliday in the seven-inning opener vs. the Wildcats while his fellow junior righthander Brad Lidge will throw the nightcap.

    To make up for one of Thursday's cancelled games, the Irish have changed the earlier makeup game versus Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Monday, April l13 to a pair of seven-inning doubleheaders, with the Eck Stadium start time remaining at 4:00 p.m. The team will attempt to add one more makeup game over the final month of the regular season.

    Three other makeup games remain on the schedule. Notre Dame and Manchester will play a doubleheader at Eck Stadium on Tuesday, April 14 (5:05 PM). The teams originally were scheduled to play just one game. Milwaukee Brewers owner and acting Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig will throw out the first pitch of the Manchester doubleheader.

    The Irish also previously added home games on Thursday, April 23 vs. Toledo (6:05 PM) and Thursday, April 30 vs. the University of Chicago (3 PM).

    Notre Dame--which also had doubleheaders cancelled at Providence and Connecticut in mid-March--now will play a maximum of 20 BIG EAST games, down from the original 26-game schedule. The Irish lead the BIG EAST with a 6-0 record, followed closely by Rutgers (5-1), which owns the luxury of having doubleheaders cancelled versus three of the BIG EAST's top teams: Notre Dame, St. John's and West Virginia.

    BIG EAST UPDATE

    The BIG EAST Conference has seen 21 games cancelled due to weather this season while playing 41, with two others postponed to later dates.

    In addition to the 10 combined games that have been cancelled involving Notre Dame and Rutgers, the following BIG EAST doubleheaders have been lost: Boston College at Georgetown and Villanova (4 total games); St. John's and West Virginia at Seton Hall (4); and Pittsburgh at Villanova (2).

    Villanova was winning the second game Thursday at St. John's, 12-2 in the top of the third, when the game was called and ultimately cancelled due to rain.

    Two midweek BIG EAST games on April 1--Seton Hall at Rutgers and UConn at St. John's--were postponed to April 29 due to bad weather.

    Notre Dame (6-0), Rutgers (5-1) and idle West Virginia (3-1)--which plays host to Connecticut for an April 10 doubleheader--remain atop the BIG EAST standings.

    Fourth-place Providence improved to 7-2-1 by taking a pair of games at 10th-place Pittsburgh (1-10) on Thursday. The Friars rallied to win the first game 7-6 and won the second game 10-3, when it was called in the bottom of the eighth (PC had led 10-3 through seven innings).

    Seton Hall (6-2) moved into sole possession of fifth place with a pair of victories over last place Boston College (0-5-1), by scores of 3-2 and 17-3.

    St. John's fell to sixth after losing the opening 9-3 game to eighth-place Villanova (3-5) but the Red Storm caught a break when VU's 10-run lead in the nightcap was negated due to the weather cancellation.

    Saturday's upcoming doubleheaders include BC at Rutgers, UConn at Pitt, Georgetown at St. John's, Villanova at Notre Dame and PC at WVU.

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