March 6, 2013
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – University of Notre Dame senior RHP Adam Norton was named College Sports Madness National Pitcher of the Week on Tuesday. He tossed a complete-game, four-hit shutout of No. 25 Virginia Tech Saturday.
Norton (Highland, Ind./Andrean H.S.) collected Notre Dame’s first complete-game shutout over a top-25 opponent since Danny Tamayo blanked Mississippi State in the Starkville Regional on May 28, 2000. The right-handed hurler completely baffled a Virginia Tech lineup that entered the game with a .337-team batting average and averaged 8.3 runs/game.
Norton retired the first 10 Hokies of the game before a one-out single in the fourth inning. He promptly sent down the next six Virginia Tech hitters before a bunt single in the top of the sixth inning. Norton did not allow another base runner until two outs in the top of the ninth inning – another stretch of 10 consecutive retired Hokies. He was one out away from a two-hit shutout, but Virginia Tech rallied in the ninth inning.
The Hokies got back-to-back singles to bring the potential tying run to the plate. All that stood in between Norton and the victory, complete game and shutout was Virginia Tech slugger Tyler Moran, who set the Cape Cod League record with 16 home runs this past summer. Norton got Moran to pop out to the catcher to end the game.
Norton struck out five and walked one. He faced 32 batters and needed just 108 pitches (76 strikes).
Norton lowered his season ERA to 1.71 with his third career complete game.
Notre Dame returns to action this weekend with the Dodgertown Classic. The Irish open the weekend at 6 p.m. PT Friday against No. 4 UCLA at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Notre Dame will then travel across town on Saturday to face USC at 2 p.m. PT at Dedeaux Field. The Irish close the weekend’s festivities at 10 a.m. PT Sunday with No. 10 Oklahoma at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
— ND —