March 12, 2011
CONWAY, S.C. – Senior RHP Brian Dupra tossed 8.0 masterful shutout innings to lead Notre Dame to a 3-0 victory over UAB in the first game of the 2011 Caravelle Resort Classic Saturday morning. The Irish improved to 5-6 on the year, while the Blazers dropped to 8-4 and saw their seven-game winning streak come to an end. Notre Dame will play the host Coastal Carolina at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
Dupra improved to 2-1 on the year with his fourth consecutive quality start. The right-handed hurler limited UAB to just three hits, including one infield single. Dupra punched out six and walked an uncharacteristic four. He has been the starting pitcher in each of Notre Dame’s two shutouts in 2011.
Ryan Woolley was charged with the loss for the Blazers. Woolley (2-2) was charged with three runs, all earned, on six hits in 7.0 innings. He fanned five and walked three.
Freshman Trey Mancini and junior Alex Robinson were the only Irish players with more than one hit. The rookie designated hitter went 2-for-4, while the left fielder went 2-for-3 with a run scored. Sophomore catcher Joe Hudson went 1-for-4 with a two-run single.
The Irish finally broke through on Woolley in the bottom of the fifth inning. After sophomore OF Charlie Markson popped out to open the inning, senior 3B Greg Sherry was plunked with a 2-2 offering from the Blazers starting pitcher. Robinson followed with a perfect hit-and-run single to put runners on the corners with one out. Sophomore 2B Frank DeSico was unable to get the run home after popping up his safety squeeze bunt attempt. Fifth-year OF Herman Petzold followed with a walk to load the bases before a passed ball gave the Irish a 1-0 lead. After freshman 1B Eric Jagielo was intentionally walked, Hudson ripped a two-run single to push the Notre Dame advantage to 3-0.
After issuing three walks over the first two innings, Dupra regained his form in the middle innings. He retired 16 of 17 UAB hitters between the third and seventh innings, including 13 consecutive Blazers at one point. The only UAB batter to reach base along the way was Austin on an infield single to shortstop in the third inning.
Harry Clark snapped the streak off Dupra with a leadoff single to open the eighth inning. Ivan De Jesus followed with an infield single to put a pair on with nobody out. After a fielder’s choice grounder, Dupra issued a walk to load the bases with one down and Jamal Austin at the plate (maybe the fastest player in all of college baseball). Dupra got Austin to ground into a tailor-made 4-6-3 double play to end the inning. Austin had not been doubled up yet to this point of the season.
Freshman RHP Dan Slania replaced Dupra and tossed a scoreless ninth inning to register his first career save. The rookie allowed back-to-back hits to open the ninth, but got a fly out and consecutive punch-outs to keep the shutout intact.
Dupra struggled with his command over the first two innings. He entered the outing with only one walk in 21.0 innings of work, but issued a leadoff walk to open the game. However, Dupra evaded any damage with a caught stealing and back-to-back groundouts.
Dupra again ran into trouble with command in the second inning. Patrick Palmiero reached on Dupra’s error to open the frame before another walk put runners on first and second with no outs. Dupra retired the next two UAB batters himself on a sacrifice bunt attempt to retire Palmiero at third base and an Andrew Manning check-swing grounder back to the mound. Dupra loaded the bases with his third free pass of the contest, but struck out Keith DePew to end the inning.
Notre Dame did not take advantage of leadoff hits in each of the first two innings. DeSico and Mancini led off each inning with a single, moved to second on sacrifice bunts, but each was stranded at third base.