April 22, 2016
By Russell Dorn
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – After the No. 29 University of Notre Dame baseball team plated two runs in the top half of the eighth inning to trim the Seminole lead to two at 7-5, No. 7 Florida State scored five runs in the bottom half to pull away for a 12-6 win in front of 3,957 fans at Dick Howser Stadium in game one of a three-game Atlantic Coast Conference series.
Down 7-3 entering the eighth frame, the Irish got something going on the FSU bullpen, loading the bases before a wild pitch scored senior Ricky Sanchez. Junior Ryan Lidge then tallied an RBI groundout to trim the margin to two at 7-5 entering the bottom half of the inning.
However, the Seminoles wouldn’t let the Irish make the full comeback, as five runs crossed the dish in the inning to up their lead to seven at 12-5. Highlighting the frame for FSU was a two-RBI double by Quincy Nieporte, who finished the day with two hits, a homer, five RBI and a run scored. Notre Dame used three pitchers to get out of the inning.
Notre Dame held the early 3-1 lead by scoring one run each in the first, second and third innings. Lidge had a sharply hit RBI double in the second to score one run and Sanchez had an RBI single to center field in the third to highlight the early innings.
Florida State rallied with three runs in the third to take its first lead of the game and added one run in the fifth and two runs in the seventh on two solo homers.
Irish starter Peter Solomon (3-4) suffered the loss (8 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 3 BB) but did have a career-high nine strikeouts on 109 pitches.
Sanchez turned in another three-hit day (3 H, RBI, R), his sixth of the season. Junior Cavan Biggio reached base three times with a hit, walk and hit by pitch and sophomore Jake Shepski had two hits – including a homer – and two runs scored. The homer was Shepski’s team-high sixth of the season.
The loss snapped Notre Dame’s seven-game winning streak.
The Irish (23-13, 9-8 ACC) and the Seminoles (26-11, 11-4 ACC) continue their three-game ACC series at 6 p.m. (ET) Saturday. Fans can follow along through ESPN3, WatchND (audio only) and live stats. Links for all three are on the Notre Dame baseball schedule page.
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.