March 7, 2009
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Rice All-American and reigning national pitcher of the week Ryan Berry tossed his second consecutive complete game, two-hit shutout to lead the Owls past Notre Dame, 9-0, in college baseball action from the 2009 Academy Sports + Outdoors Rice Classic. Rice improved to 8-3 on the season, while the Irish dropped to 4-4.
Berry, who came into the afternoon following a complete game, two-hit shutout of top-ranked Texas A&M last weekend, was outstanding again. The right-handed hurler limited Notre Dame to just a pair of singles and did not allow one Irish base runner into scoring position the entire game. Berry struck out eight and did walk a batter. In fact, Berry only worked to a three-ball count once the entire afternoon and it came in the eighth inning.
Berry improved to 2-0 with the victory. Over his last two outings, he has tossed 18.0 scoreless innings and surrendered just four hits. Berry has also fanned 20 without a single walk. He extended his overall scoreless streak to 20.0 innings.
Sophomore Brian Dupra (Rochester, N.Y.) picked up the loss. The righty matched Berry over the first two innings, but ran into all kinds of trouble in the third and fourth innings.
Rice batted around in both the third and fourth inning, totaling nine runs (five in the third and four more in the fourth) on eight hits.
Dupra was charged with seven earned runs on seven hits in 3.0+ innings. He struck out one, walked one and dropped to 1-2 on the year.
The nine-run cushion was more than enough for Berry. He retired 15 consecutive Notre Dame batters at one point and allowed just one over the minimum on the day.
Freshman Joe Spano (Verona, N.J.) replaced Dupra in the third inning and pitched quite effectively after some early trouble. The southpaw worked 4.0 innings and allowed two earned runs on two hits (kept Rice off the scoreboard over the final three innings). He fanned two and walked two. Fellow freshman Ryan Richter (South Bend, Ind.) made his Irish debut and tossed one scoreless inning of relief.
Diego Seastrunk, Rick Hague and Craig Manuel all added two hits for the Owls. Seastrunk drove in three, while both Hague and Manuel drove in two.
Senior Evan Sharpley and sophomore Cameron McConnell were the only two Irish players to collect hits.
Notre Dame returns to action tomorrow afternoon against Washington State. First pitch between the Irish and Cougars is scheduled for 12:00 p.m. CT. Junior Eric Maust (Alpharetta, Ga.) will take the mound for Notre Dame.
-- ND --