April 14, 2008
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Junior pitcher Brittney Bargar punched in a one-hit performance from the circle as the Notre Dame softball team defeated Rutgers on Monday at Melissa Cook Stadium in the first of two league contests on the day. Bargar went the distance and fanned five Scarlet Knights in the 1-0 BIG EAST Conference win.
Notre Dame (26-12 overall, 7-3 BIG EAST) dropped game two to Rutgers (16-24 overall, 3-9 BIG EAST) by a count of 5-4.
Bargar received her run support in the third inning of the opener when a Linda Kohan double drove home Sarah Smith, giving the righthanded pitcher her 20th win of the campaign. Kohan’s hit was one of four for Notre Dame, as Katie Laing added a single and her 11th double of the season.
Amanda Shaw had the only hit for Rutgers with single in the third. Pitcher Chrissy Yard (5-13) was charged with the loss as she gave up one earned run in 6.0 innings and struck out three.
A prime opportunity to bring in a run for the Irish came in the bottom of the second when Laing led off with a single to right and Ashley Ellis killed a bunt right in front of the catcher to reach base safely. With no outs, Christine Lux got the job done with a sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position. But Yard took down the next two batters to prevent any damage.
Rookie shortstop Katie Fleury belted her first career homer in the bottom of the first inning of game two, a two-run shot to right that put Notre Dame on top early.
Battling control issues, Irish pitcher Jody Valdivia (6-5) walked the bases loaded in the fourth. With one out, Kim Hodges lifted a sacrifice fly to left that cut the Irish lead in half. Valdivia went 5.0 innings and gave up five runs – four earned – and walked four. Rutgers also managed to reach base by means of three base-hits and four hit batsmen. The win went to Nicole Lindley (6-4) who gave up two earned runs in 7.0 innings. Bargar logged the final 2.0 scoreless frames for Notre Dame.
Two Scarlet Knight errors in the bottom of the fourth led to two more runs for the home team, bringing the score to 4-1. Beth Northway and Lux scored unearned runs, with Lux’s coming on Erin Marrone’s RBI infield grounder.
Rutgers made its move in the sixth by posting four runs to set the final score. A hit batter, one walk, and an Irish error loaded the bases for Hodges to land a three-RBI double to left.
Notre Dame out-hit Rutgers, 7-3, with Rutgers committing three errors to Notre Dame’s one. Both teams left six runners on base.
The Irish travel to Northwestern on Tuesday (April 15) to face the 14th-ranked Wildcats at 4 p.m. (CT). Live stats will be available at UND.com