March 27, 1998

Notre Dame Baseball Powers Past Indiana Tech, 15-3

Corbin has solid first start; Felker, Ust and Wagner all hit home runs;

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Sophomore righthander John Corbin turned in six strong innings in his first career start while the Notre Dame offense rapped out 17 hits--including nine for extra bases--as the Irish defeated visiting Indiana Tech, 15-3, in a makeup game Friday at Frank Eck Stadium.

Notre Dame (12-9) broke open a 2-0 game with three runs in the fifth, four in the sixth and six in the seventh. The Irish received home runs from sophomore leftfielder Jeff Felker, sophomore third baseman Brant Ust and junior DH Jeff Wagner, in addition to a triple by senior second baseman Todd Frye and five doubles.

Corbin--who pitched just four innings last season due to arm problems and on Wednesday saw his first action for the Irish in over a year--held the Warriors to three runs on five hits and one walk over the first six innings, with two strikeouts. He faced 24 batters while totaling 83 pitches.

Indiana Tech (10-6) managed three runs in the sixth but stranded eight men on base (the Irish left nine). Junior righthander Jake Morton (1-1) took the loss, allowing six runs on eight hits and four walks over the first five innings.

Notre Dame broke in front with two runs in the third. Junior catcher Mike Knecht singled off the third-base bag and moved to second on a single by junior centerfielder Allen Greene. Senior shortstop J.J. Brock--who went 4-for-4 with two doubles, two RBI and three runs--then loaded the bases when he reached on an attempted sacrifice bunt down the third-base line. A one-out wild pitch allowed Knecht to score before Greene came home on Ust's two-out, infield single.

The Irish added three runs on three hits in the fifth, sparked by Brock's double over the head of centerfielder John Baum. The surging Felker--who is 8-for-14 this week after a 9-for-50 start--then sent his first home run of the season over the centerfield fence and Ust followed two batters later with his third home run in as many games and sixth of the season, a blast that quickly sailed over the left-field fence.

The four-run sixth was highlighted by Frye's triple to the alley in right-center, Greene's RBI double to left-center, Brock's run-scoring double over Baum's head and Ust's two-out, RBI double down the leftfield line.

Notre Dame broke the game open with a six-run seventh. Frye reached on an error and Knecht was hit by a pitch before Greene stroked an RBI double off the right-field wall. Brock added a run-scoring single through the left side of the infield and Felker then slapped an RBI single through the right side. Wagner capped the big inning with his sixth home run of the season, a three-run shot to left-center.

Indiana Tech scored three runs in the sixth, when Jamie Harper plated Dan McFadden with a sacrifice fly and Baum launched a two-run shot over the leftfield fence.

NOTES: Wagner's home run was the 33rd of his career, tying Joe Binkiewicz ('92) for fourth in Irish history, behind Ryan Topham (34, '93-'95), Frank Jacobs (37, '89-'91) and former teammate Mike Amrhein (37, '94-'97) ... Brock moved into 10th on the Irish career games played list (201) while his 201 career starts are tied for fifth-most at Notre Dame (since '89) ... Ust has 17 career home runs, just one shy of earning a share of 10th on the Irish career home run list.

INDIANA TECH (10-6) 0-0-0   0-0-3   0-0-0       3   7   1
NOTRE DAME (12-9)   0-0-2   0-3-4   6-0-X       15  17  1
Morton, Gaigler and Cefalde.  Corbin, Cavey (7), Lapinskas (8), Berticelli (9) and Knecht.

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