CLINTON, South Carolina — The University of Notre Dame baseball team got it done at the plate once again on Saturday afternoon en route to a 10-4 win over Presbyterian to clinch the series. The Irish tallied 16 hits in the win, the fifth time this season they have had 10 or more hits.
Niko Kavadas continued his strong series with his third home run on the weekend, and fourth of the season in the first inning. The Irish scored three in the first inning and had runs in four of the first five innings to build the lead.
Presbyterian (2-8) got the deficit down to two runs after the seventh inning but the Irish (6-2) scored once in the eighth and three more times in the ninth to put the game out of reach.
How It Happened
As they have done most of the season, Notre Dame got off to a fast start. The Irish put three on the board in the first inning and they have scored first in seven of their eight games.
Spencer Myers led the game off with a double and advanced to third on a fly out. Jared Miller brought him home after his grounder ate up the shortstop and Miller made it into second. The red-hot bat of Kavadas stepped to the plate and launched a two-run homer to right center. It was his third home run in his previous four at-bats.
Jack Alexander continued to have a good weekend in the bottom of the second. He hit a double down the line in left field and Jack Brannigan came home to score.
Brannigan brought his own offense to lead off the fourth inning. He sent the ninth pitch of the bat over the wall in left for his first career home run and extended the Irish lead to 5-0.
Presbyterian struck back with three runs in the bottom of the fourth. The Blue Hose were looking for more when Zack Prajzner made a diving play to get the force out at second and end the threat.
Notre Dame got one of the runs back in the next half inning. With runners on first and second, Ryan Cole singled to left field and Kavadas was going on contact to come around and score.
Joe Boyle came on in relief in the fifth after a solid outing from Alex Rao. Boyle made quick work of the Blue Hose, striking out two in the inning. Boyle picked up two more strikeouts in the sixth and one more in seventh before Tommy Vail entered the game with one out in the seventh.
Vail forced a pop up to Kavadas at first and then with the two runners in scoring position, he got a ground out to first to end the inning and the threat. After seven innings, Notre Dame held a 6-4 lead.
The Irish got a run back in the eighth after two straight steals from Spencer Myers put him at third with two outs. Carter Putz legged out an infield single and Myers scored on the play to bring the lead back to three runs for the Irish.
Notre Dame added three insurance runs in the ninth to seal the 10-4 win. It is the second-straight game the Irish have scored in double-figures.
- Niko Kavadas continued his hot series with a two-run homer in his first at-bat on Saturday. It was his third home run in his previous four at-bats to that point.
- Notre Dame scored in double figures for the second straight game and third time this season.
- The Irish tallied a season-high 16 hits, the fifth game this season they have had double-digit hits.
- 16 hits is the most in a game since May 14, 2019 when the Irish also had 16 in a 12-4 win over Northwestern.
- Spencer Myers has scored a run in six of his seven games this season after his run in the first inning against the Blue Hose.
- Myers tallied two steals in the win, his third multi-steal game of the season.
- Jack Alexander tallied two RBI in the 10-4 win. He now has seven RBI in the two games against the Blue Hose.
- Freshman Jack Brannigan hit his first career home run in the fourth inning. He is the fifth player to hit a home run this season for the Irish.
- Joe Boyle tallied five strikeouts in 2.1 innings of relief to record the win. It is the most strikeouts he has had in an outing this season.
The Irish aim for the series sweep when they return to PC Baseball Complex Sunday morning for the final game of the series. Will Mercer will take the mound for the Irish in the matinee matchup with first pitch scheduled for 11 a.m. ET.