April 12, 2008
PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. - Notre Dame senior Ross Brezovsky (Naples, Fla.) went 3-for-5, including a mammoth, seventh inning three-run home run to help the Irish power past Villanova, 8-5, in BIG EAST college baseball action from the Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth on Saturday afternoon. Notre Dame extends its winning streak to a season-high seven games and improves to 20-9-1 overall and 9-2 in the league. The Wildcats drop to 15-17 and 4-7.
With the Irish trailing, 3-1, Notre Dame exploded for five runs in the top of the seventh inning with the key stroke coming from Brezovsky. After the Irish loaded the bases with three consecutive singles, junior Jeremy Barnes (Garland, Texas) came through with a clutch two-run single back up the middle to tie the score, 3-3. Barnes added a game tying RBI single in the eighth inning of Friday's 2-1 victory over Villanova.
After Villanova head coach Joe Godri decided to stay with starter Brian Streilein (southpaw Ryan Shockley was up and ready in the bullpen), Brezovsky crushed a belt-high fast ball deep over the right centerfield fence to give the Irish a 6-3 lead. The bomb was Brezovsky's third of the season and 10th of his career.
The Wildcats plated a pair of runs, one was unearned, off of Irish junior closer (Albuquerque, N.M.) Kyle Weiland in the bottom of the eighth inning to draw within a run 6-5, but Billy Boockford's (Glen Ellyn, Ill.) RBI single and Greg Sherry's (Mendam, N.J.) sacrifice fly pushed the Notre Dame advantage back to three runs, 8-5.
Weiland would surrender a couple hits in the ninth inning, but struckout Derek Shunk with a pair of runners in scoring position to pick up his fifth save of the season (second in as many games).
Senior Wade Korpi (Lake Worth, Fla.) registered his fifth straight victory and improved to 5-1 on the year. The southpaw scattered seven hits and allowed three earned runs over 6.0 innings of work. Korpi struckout a pair and walked just one. Senior Tony Langford (Fort Worth, Texas) tossed a scoreless innings of relief. Weiland went 2.0 innings and yielded an earned run on four hits. He recorded a pair of strikeouts.
Sophomore David Mills (Battlecreek, Mich.) registered his second straight game of three hits. Mills went 3-for-5 with two runs scored. Sophomore A.J. Pollock (Hebron, Conn.) and senior Sean Gaston (Brownsburg, Ind.) each went 2-for-4 with a run scored. Barnes went 2-for-5 with three RBI and a run scored, while Sherry went 2-for-4 with a RBI.
Brian Streilein (2-3) picked up the loss for Villanova. The right-handed hurler gave up 13 hits in 6.1 innings of work. He was charged with six runs, all earned, and struckout six.
Notre Dame returns to action for the final game of the BIG EAST series at Villanova on Sunday. First-pitch is scheduled for 12:15 p.m. and can be heard live on ESPN Radio 1490 AM and UND.com.