March 18, 2006
The University of Notre Dame softball team (11-8) earned a rain-delayed 1-0 victory over Florida State (20-13) at the Judi Garman Classic hosted by CS Fullerton early Saturday morning. Play was suspended due to rain on Friday evening, but the Irish returned to the field focused and closed out their second consecutive one-run victory in the tournament.
Notre Dame will move to the championship bracket to face #4 Texas at 1:30 p.m. PT. A victory would push the Irish into a game Saturday morning at 8:15 a.m., while a loss would mean the Irish will return to the field of play at 6:15 p.m. Opponents for both games are yet to be determined.
The Notre Dame – Florida State matchup ended up as a classic pitching duel between senior Heather Booth and FSU’s Tiffany McDonald. Both pitchers allowed just three hits in the contest, but the Irish posted the timely hit necessary to grab the victory.
On Friday evening before the game was stopped due to a steady downpour, junior Stephanie Brown carded a two-out hit in the top of the third inning. Brown followed up by stealing second base (her ninth of the year) and scored when freshman Alexandra Kotcheff blistered an 0-2 pitch up the middle for an RBI single.
Booth made the lead hold up before and after the rain delay. She eventually worked seven innings, giving up three hits, pitching around five walks and striking out 11. Booth evened her season record at 5-5 with the shutout victory. McDonald walked one and struck out three to fall to 13-7 on the season.