May 7, 2016

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By Russell Dorn

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Pittsburgh scored five runs between the sixth and seventh innings to pull away for an 8-5 victory over the University of Notre Dame baseball team Saturday afternoon at Frank Eck Stadium.

With the win, the Panthers pick up the series victory with one game remaining.

Pitt took advantage of a struggling Irish pitching unit to tally two runs in the first inning, one in the third, three in the sixth and two in the seventh. Notre Dame starter Ryan Smoyer (3-4) went just two innings (2 H, 3 R, 4 BB, 3 SO) and was followed by Connor Hock (1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 BB), Sean Guenther (3.0 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 2 ER), Connor Hale (1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 1 SO) and Joey Cresta (2.0 IP, 1 BB, 1 SO).

Highlighting Pitt’s day was a massive two-run homer from Nick Yarnall in the first inning and a solo homer by Jacob Wright in the seventh.

The Notre Dame offense only tallied five hits on the day, but still managed to plate five runs. Junior Cavan Biggio clocked a two-RBI single in the second inning to tie the game at two. In the seventh, junior Ryan Lidge smashed a two-RBI double and Biggio added an RBI double to trim the lead to 8-5.

However, the Irish couldn’t come all the way back thanks to some solid Pitt relief pitching. After T.J. Zeuch exited after seven innings (5 H, 5 R, 4 BB, 5 SO), Garrett Wrambel (1.0 IP, 1 SO) and Yaya Chentouf (1.0 IP, 1 SO) kept the Irish hitless over the final two frames.

Biggio led the Irish with two hits, a walk and three RBI, while senior Lane Richards added a hit, walk and two runs scored to up his batting average in ACC games to .354. Junior Kyle Fiala finished with a hit, walk and two runs scored.

The Irish (25-20, 10-12 ACC) and Panthers (24-18, 10-12 ACC) wrap up their series at 1:05 p.m. ET Sunday at The Eck. Tickets are available at the stadium box office. Fans can follow along through WatchND’s free online video stream or live stats.

For more information on the Notre Dame baseball team, follow the Irish on Facebook (/NDBaseball), Twitter (@NDBaseball) and Instagram (notredamebaseball).

Russell Dorn, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2011 and coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame volleyball, rowing and baseball programs. A native of Greenwood, South Carolina, Dorn graduated from Furman University in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in history before earning his master’s degree in sports communications from Georgia State University in 2011.