April 19, 2009
PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Freshman Dani Miller extended her hitting streak to 20 games Sunday as Notre Dame swept Rutgers to remain perfect on the road against BIG EAST Conference teams this season. Miller, who entered the weekend with a 16-game hit streak, recorded at least one hit in each of the four contests at Villanova and Rutgers to build upon her school record.
The Irish (31-13 overall, 13-3 BIG EAST) dealt the Scarlet Knights (16-29, 3-15) respective losses of 4-1 and 4-3 at the RU Softball Complex.
Notre Dame returns home for five games next week starting with an April 21 affair against Northwestern. First pitch at Melissa Cook Stadium will be tossed at 6:00 p.m. (ET).
Notre Dame fell behind, 1-0, in the second inning of game one when Brittney Lindley doubled in Lindsey Curran to give the host Scarlet Knights the lead.
Three runs on five hits in the fourth boosted the Irish ahead. Linda Kohan began the frame with a lead-off double and was replaced on second with pinch-runner Christine Farrell. Farrell scurried all the way home on Heather Johnson’s bunt. Johnson was replaced by Kasey O’Connor, who duplicated Farrell’s feat on a Dani Miller single up the middle. Erin Marrone added an RBI in the stanza.
Johnson would single in the sixth, advance to second on Lux’s single and scored on a wild pitch. Johnson finished a perfect 3-for-3 from the dish.
Brittney Bargar (18-8) gave up seven hits and one earned run while Holly Johnson (4-6) was tagged for three earned runs on eight hits in the loss.
Sarah Kalka hit a two-run home run in the first off Jody Valdivia (13-5), which was one of only three hits surrendered by the pitcher in 7.0 innings. Valdivia struck out six to help her pick up another win, as the right-hander has gone without a loss since a March 14 decision versus No. 12 Arizona.
A four-run fourth inning by Notre Dame was highlighted by Miller’s two-RBI double. Fleury posted an RBI-single to center field, one of four Notre Dame hits in the inning.
Kate Valiante made it a game in the seventh with a solo home run to bring Rutgers to within one, 4-3. With no outs, Valdivia retired the next two batters on strikeouts and induced a flyball to center to complete the sweep.
Fleury and Marrone finished with two hits to lead Notre Dame as Miller’s two RBI set a team-high mark.