Feb. 27, 2000
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Freshman rightfielder Brian Stavisky delivered a game-tying home run in his debut as the Irish cleanup hitter while junior shortstop Alec Porzel ended his early slump with a game-winning home run, as Notre Dame wrapped up play at the Service Academies Classic with a 4-3 victory over Memphis at Nat Buring Field.
Notre Dame (2-1) overcame an early 2-0 deficit, with four Irish relievers holding Memphis to one run over the final seven innings. Senior righthander John Corbin recorded the final five outs to pick up the win, with four strikeouts, one walk and one hit allowed.
The game was moved from USA Baseball Stadium (in nearby Millington) to the University of Memphis, due to rain that had suspended all four tournament games scheduled for Saturday. Ohio State had defeated Memphis earlier Sunday (11-4) and advanced to the tournament championship game, versus Air Force on Sunday afternoon (the third and fifth-place games were not played).
Memphis (0-8) received a solid outing from lefthander Jason Wiedmeyer, who allowed four runs (three earned) on eight hits and one walk over seven and two-thirds innings, with five strikeouts.
Porzel pushed Notre Dame into the lead with one out in the bottom of the eighth, sending an 0-1 fastball over the fence in left-center field.
The lefthanded-hitting Stavisky-who batted in the No. 6 spot during the first two games-forged a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the sixth, sending a two-out, 1-0 fastball over the rightfield fence.
The Tigers quickly retook the lead with a run in the top of the seventh but the Irish re-tied the game moments later, sparked by senior leftfielder Matt Nussbaums first-pitch single up the middle. Sophomore third baseman Andrew Bushey then deposited a 1-2 pitch into the right-center gap, with Nussbaum running on the play to score all the way from first.
Memphis scored single runs in the first two inning, versus sophomore righthander Drew Duff (a native of Sevierville, Tenn.). The Tigers opened the game with a walk and stolen base by Paul Reuer. Jay Fik then hit a one-out ball to shallow center field, with Irish sophomore centerfielder Steve Stanley mistakingly charging back on the play (he then shifted forward but could not make the catch, with Reuer scoring on the play).
The top of the second saw Barrett Smith hit a 3-2 leadoff double to center field, followed by Troy Lomelis walk and Tyler Sheltons sacrifice bunt. Duff then struck out Wes Crane but Porzel misplayed a routine grounder by Reuer, allowing Smith to score the Tigers’ second run.
A throwing error by Memphis second baseman Daniel Uggla allowed Stavisky to reach first-and move on to second-leading off the fourth. A flyout to right field by senior first baseman Jeff Felker advanced the runner and Nussbaum added a sacrifice fly to center field for the first Irish run.
After Stavisky had forced the 2-2 tie, Reuer put Memphis back ahead by lifting a one-out, 1-1 pitch over the rightfield fence.
NOTES: Duff pitched the first two innings (3 H, 3 BB, 2 Ks) before the two freshman righthanders made their debuts: J.P. Gagne (2 IP, 3 Ks) and Matt Laird (1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 K) … junior lefty Mike Naumann then recorded the next six outs (1 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 Ks) … Naumann relieved Laird in the sixth and walked Lomeli to load the bases before rolling up a 4-6-3, rally-ending double play … Stavisky made yet another highlight-reel catch (in the first inning), sprinting to his right before making a sliding grab in shallow right-center field … the Irish turned another double play in the fifth inning and ended both the first and second innings by throwing runners out at the plate (the first throw came from Felker, after Porzel’s throw was too late to get the batter, while Porzel scrambled after his error to nail Lomeli at the plate) … ND’s top hitters on the three-game trip included: sophomore catcher Paul O’Toole (5-for-11, 5 RBI, R, 3B), senior second baseman Jeff Perconte (3-for-8, 2 RBI, 3 R, 2B), Stanley (3-for-10, RBI, BB) and Stavisky (3-for-10, RBI, 3 R, HR, 3B, 2B) … Porzel went 0-for-7 with three Ks in the first two game before Sunday’s 2-for-4 effort … Felker collected his first hit in the eighth, on a ball that fell into right-center field after appearing to be lost by the Memphis outfielders … that hit gives Felker 39 career doubles, moving him into a tie with Ryan Topham (1993-95) for ninth in Irish history … the win boosts Corbin’s career record to 9-3.
MEMPHIS 1-1-0 0-0-0 1-0-0 3 10 1NOTRE DAME 0-0-0 1-0-1 1-1-0 4 8 2
Jason Wiedmeyer, Jarod Wilson (8) and Barrett Smith.
Drew Duff, J.P. Gagne (3), Matt Laird (5), Mike Naumann (6), John Corbin (8) and Paul O’Toole.