April 19, 2007
NOTRE DAME, Ind.- Sophomore Brittney Bargar (Corona, Calif./Corona) continued her impressive pitching at Ivy Field by shutting down Valparaiso (22-11) in a 5-0 win by Notre Dame’s softball team (24-14, 9-1 BIG EAST) on Thursday, April 19. Bargar now sports a 9-0 record with 0.22 ERA in home games this year.
Bargar (16-7) scattered seven hits in posting her third complete game shutout of the season and 17th complete game overall. The sophomore also extended her scoreless inning streak to 20 in the win.
Freshman Christine Lux (Glendale, Ill./Glenbard West) went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Sophomore Linda Kohan (Westminster, Calif./Westminster) also had two hits, a run scored and one drive in for Notre Dame. In all, nine different Irish players recorded hits and five scored runs.
The Irish would explode for all five of their runs in the first inning. Senior Stephanie Brown (Chandler, Ariz./Corona del Sol) pushed a leadoff single into short left field and went to second on senior Gessica Hufnagle’s (Middlebury, Ind./Northridge) sacrifice bunt. A Laing double right down the left-field line scored Brown from second for the first run. After a pop out, Lux followed with a double to left field to score Laing. A balk moved Lux to third and she came into score on Kohan’s single to left-center field. Kohan would score all the way from first as sophomore Beth Northway (Kentwood, Mich./East Kentwood) doubled into the corner in left field and advanced to third on the fielding error from the Valparaiso leftfielder, Tracy Korth. Bargar then plated Northway on the comeback single off the Crusader pitcher, Andrea Zappia.
The Crusaders wasted a golden opportunity in the second. Megan Carroll and Whitney Warner both singled to start the inning. A sacrifice bunt moved each runner up a base, but a foul out and a strikeout ended things quickly for Valparaiso.
The Irish had a runner thrown out at the plate in the second. Hufnagle singled and took second on the fielding error from the Crusader’s center fielder. After two pop outs, Lux singled through the right side. Hufnagle, after reaching third base rounded the bag quickly and was caught in a rundown in which the shortstop, Alicia Ashburn, ultimately tagged her out attempting to score.
Kohan led off the third inning with a single. Freshman Ashley Ellis (Pikeville, Tenn./Bledsoe County) pinch ran for Kohan and moved to second on Northway’s sacrifice bunt, but a fly out and grounded allowed Zappia to escape unscathed.
Back-to-back singles from Shannon Robinson and Carroll to lead off the fourth again put Valpo in an envious position, but again Bargar was up the challenge inducing a double play ground out to third and a ground out back to her to end the inning unscathed.
In what was becoming a reoccurring theme, Valpo again led off the sixth with back-to-back singles, this time by Karen Korb and Robinson, but two ground outs and a strikeout ended the inning for the Crusaders.
Next, Notre Dame will continue the busy homestand with a conference doubleheader against Louisville (26-17, 7-1 BIG EAST) at noon on April 21.
Irish Notes: The Irish have now won four in a row … Notre Dame is now 14-1 at Ivy Field and 22-11 in day games this year …Laing extended her hitting streak to a season best four games in the win.