March 9, 2009
Overall Record: 5-4, 0-0 BIG EAST
Name Avg. AB R H HR RBI TB SLG% BB HBP OBP SB-ATT Greg Sherry .444 9 1 4 0 0 5 .556 0 0 .444 0-0 A.J. Pollock .333 12 1 4 0 5 6 .500 0 0 .333 1-1
Player of the Week Nominee:
Date Opponent Score AB R H RBI 2B 3B HR BB SB-A AVG 3.6 Oral Roberts W, 2-1 4 1 2 1 1 0 0 0 0-0 .500 3.7 #7 Rice L, 0-9 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 .250 3.8 Washington St. W, 7-3 4 0 2 4 1 0 0 0 1-1 .333 Totals 12 1 4 5 2 0 0 0 1-1 .333Junior A.J. Pollock (Hebron, Conn) batted .333 this weekend in three games from the 2009 Rice Classic. The centerfielder went 4-for-12 with one run scored, two doubles, five RBI and one stolen base. Pollock also played flawless defense, recording five putouts and made a pair of spectacular diving catches over the weekend. Pollock drove in five of the six runs Notre Dame drove in as a team over the three games. He capped off the weekend with a 2-for-4 effort with a double and four RBI in the 7-3 victory over Washington State on Sunday.
Pitcher of the Week Nominee:
Date Opponent Score GS IP H R-ER BB-SO WP HBP W-L SV ERA 3.8 Washington St. W, 7-3 * 7.0 4 3-2 3-1 0 0 1-0 0 2.57 Totals 1 7.0 4 3-2 3-1 0 0 1-0 0 2.57Notre Dame junior starting pitcher Eric Maust allowed just two earned runs on four hits in 7.0 innings to lead the Irish past Washington State, 7-3, in final day action from the 2009 Academy Sports + Outdoors Rice Classic Sunday afternoon. With the victory, Notre Dame improved to 5-4 and took two of its three games over the weekend. Maust (Alpharetta, Ga.) was sharp from the opening pitch. The right-handed hurler retired the first eight Washington State batters of the ball game before a two-out walk in the bottom of the third inning. Maust then surrendered a two strike, two out double to place a pair of runners in scoring position, but got Shea Vucinich to ground out to end the threat. Maust then retired 10 straight Cougars between the third and sixth inning. Washington State did managed to scratch across two runs in the sixth on Alex Burg's two-out, two-run triple to cut the Irish lead to 4-2. Maust improved to 1-0 on the year with his longest outing of the season. He walked three and struck out just one, but retired the leadoff batter in five of his seven innings. Maust lowered his season earned-run average to 3.63.
Notre Dame finished its weekend at the Rice Invitational with a 2-1 record. The Irish knocked off Oral Roberts, who later being the 7th-ranked Owls, and Washington State. Notre Dame led the tournament in batting average (.202) and fielding percentage (.982).
The Irish also got stellar individual performances from a number of players. Sophomore Greg Sherry (Mendham, N.J.) led the tournament in hitting with a .444 batting average. Junior A.J. Pollock (Hebron, Conn.) finished third in hitting (.333), third in hits (4) and third in total bases (9), but also led the field in doubles (2) and RBI (5).
Notre Dame's bullpen was back to form this weekend. A weekend after the Irish blew a pair of games in the eighth and ninth inning; the Irish pen went 1-0 over the weekend with a 2.70 ERA and one save. The quartet of junior Steven Mazur (Round Rock, Texas), freshman Ryan Richter (South Bend, Ind.), freshman Joe Spano (Verona, N.J.), junior David Mills (Battle Creek, Mich.) and junior Todd Miller (Franklin, Tenn.) allowed just five hits in 10.0 innings of work. They struck out seven and walked three, while opponents batted just .161 against them.
In the weekend opener against Oral Roberts, senior Jeremy Barnes (Garland, Texas) went 2-for-4 with a go-ahead RBI single in the bottom of the eighth inning as the Irish knocked off the Golden Eagles and ace starting pitcher Jerry Sullivan, 2-1. Sullivan, who went 9-2 last season, had not lost in his last 15 appearances.
After Oral Roberts tied the score, 1-1, on Tyler Garewal's solo home run in the top of the eighth inning, Notre Dame answered. Pollock legged out an infield single and moved into scoring position on Juan Martinez's throwing error. Pollock advanced to third base on Mills' ground out and coasted home on Barnes' clutch RBI single to right field.
Mazur came on in the ninth inning and quickly retired Jeremiah Mejia and Danny Duffy on punch outs before getting Garewal to line out to Barnes and give the right-handed closer his first career save. Garewal smoked a line drive that Barnes' managed to snag despite momentum totally carrying him the opposite direction.
Miller picked up the victory in relief and even his record at 1-1. He replaced sophomore Cole Johnson (Hudson, Ohio) in the seventh inning and worked around Johnson's leadoff walk. After a Robert Barbosa sacrifice bunt, Johnny Roberts legged out an infield hit to put runners on the corners with one out. Miller got out of the jam with a pair of pop outs.
Miller was charged with one earned run on three hits in 2.0 innings. He struck out one and walked one.
Johnson was nearly unhittable in the no-decision. The righty struck out a career-best seven and allowed just one Oral Roberts' batter into scoring position. The only hit Johnson allowed was a third inning bunt single from Garewal.
Pollock and Barnes each went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Pollock also added a run scored.
On Saturday, 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.
Berry, who came into the afternoon following a complete game, two-hit shutout of top-ranked Texas A&M last weekend, was outstanding. The right-handed hurler limited Notre Dame to just a pair of singles and did not allow a single Irish base runner into scoring position. Berry struck out eight and did walk a batter. In fact, Berry only worked to a three-ball count just once the entire game and it was 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 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.
Spano 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. He fanned two and walked two. Richter made his Irish debut and tossed one scoreless inning of relief.
In Sunday's victory over Washington State, junior starting pitcher Eric Maust (Alpharetta, Ga.) allowed just two earned runs on four hits in 7.0 innings to lead the Irish past the Cougars.
Maust was sharp from the opening pitch. The right-handed hurler retired the first eight Washington State batters of the ball game before a two-out walk in the bottom of the third inning. Maust then surrendered a two strike, two out double to place a pair of runners in scoring position, but got Shea Vucinich to ground out to end the threat.
He retired 10 straight Cougars between the third and sixth inning. Washington State did managed to scratch across two runs in the sixth on Alex Burg's two-out, two-run triple to cut the Irish lead to 4-2.
Notre Dame answered with a run in the seventh and two more in the eighth to put the game away.
Maust improved to 1-0 on the year with his longest outing of the season. He walked three and struck out just one, but retired the leadoff batter in five of his seven innings. Maust lowered his season earned-run average to 3.63.
Notre Dame returns to action this week with a pair of non-conference games against Grambling on Tuesday (3:00 p.m.) and Wednesday (Noon) at Wolff Stadium in San Antonio. The Irish will remain in San Antonio for this weekend's annual Irish Classic. Notre Dame will face Illinois State (Thurs., 3:00 p.m.), Texas Pan-American (Fri., 3:00 p.m. and Sun., Noon) and Trinity College (Sat., 7:00 p.m.).