April 24, 2016

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By Russell Dorn

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – For the third consecutive game the University of Notre Dame baseball team jumped out to lead at No. 7 Florida State. Unfortunately for the Irish, however, the Seminoles rallied for the third consecutive game to claim an 11-5 victory and series sweep in front of 4,278 fans Sunday afternoon at Dick Howser Stadium.

Everything seemed to go right for Notre Dame in the first inning, as the Irish recorded five hits and took advantage of three Seminole errors to jump out to a 5-0 lead. Seniors Zak Kutsulis and Lane Richards and freshman Matt Vierling all drove in runs in the frame.

On the mound, junior Ryan Smoyer was dealing early, as he struck out the side in the bottom of the firth. The Bowling Green, Ohio native was actually cruising through four innings, allowing just two hits and two walks. However, the game began to unravel for the Irish in the fifth frame.

With one out, the Seminoles began a stretch where they totaled three hits and five runs to tie the game at five. A pain in Notre Dame’s side all weekend, FSU DH Quincy Nieporte had a two-run homer to highlight the fifth inning.

FSU then tacked on two more runs in the sixth and four in the seventh on a grand slam by shortstop Taylor Walls.

The Irish plated one run in the ninth on a sac fly from Kutsulis.

For Notre Dame, Richards finished with a three-hit day, while Kyle Fiala, Kutsulis and Cavan Biggio all posted two-hit afternoons. Kutsulis also had two RBI.

The Irish (23-15, 9-10 ACC) have a busy week coming up with five more games. They play Indiana in Indianapolis at 7 p.m. ET Tuesday before welcoming in Eastern Michigan to Frank Eck Stadium for a 6:05 p.m. ET Wednesday tilt. Next weekend Notre Dame plays host to Ohio in a three-game non-conference series.

For more information on the Notre Dame baseball team, follow the Irish on Facebook (/NDBaseball), Twitter (@NDBaseball) and Instagram (notredamebaseball).

Russell Dorn, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2011 and coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame volleyball, rowing and baseball programs. A native of Greenwood, South Carolina, Dorn graduated from Furman University in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in history before earning his master’s degree in sports communications from Georgia State University in 2011.