ORLANDO, Fla. — The Notre Dame softball team split its final two games in competition at the Diamond 9 Citrus Classic, defeating Morgan State, 4-1, but losing to Iowa, 2-1, Sunday at the Wide World of Sports complex.
How It Happened vs. Morgan State
Alexis Holloway (3-4) hurled 6.0 solid innings and limited the Bears to just one earned run on three hits — all singles, while Abby Sweet recorded a pair of hits and Cait Brooks added a two-run single to help the Irish get past Morgan State.
Holloway struck out seven, which equaled her season-high set against Oklahoma State on February 15. The sophomore did not issue a walk for the first time in a start this season.
After Morgan State grabbed the game’s first lead, 1-0, in the top of the third inning, Notre Dame immediately responded in the bottom half of the inning. Emma Clark and Ali Wester opened the inning with back-to-back singles. After Wester swiped second base, Katie Marino tied the game, 1-1, with an infield single. Marino promptly stole second base and coasted home, along with Wester, on Brooks two-run single down the left field line that pushed the Irish lead to 3-1.
Notre Dame would extend its lead to 4-1 on Madison Heide’s RBI single. Sweet legged out a bunt single to open the inning then swiped second before Heide laced a 3-1 offering down the left field line.
The three-run cushion was more than enough for Holloway. She retired 11 of the final 13 batters she faced.
Morgan Ryan came on in the seventh and tossed a scoreless inning of relief to pick up her first save of the year.
How It Happened vs. Iowa
Payton Tidd (3-3) spun 6.0 innings, struck out a career-best 10 and did not allow an earned run, but an error of her own in the first inning proved costly. Iowa plated two unearned runs to grab a 2-0 lead.
Tidd settled down and retired 13 of the next 14 Hawkeye hitters. She even worked around a leadoff single in the Iowa sixth inning.
In all, Tidd yielded four hits and issued one walk.
Notre Dame was limited to just six hits by Iowa starting pitcher Allison Doocy (5-2). She allowed just one unearned run and struck out six.
Wester was the lone Irish player with a multi-hit game.
The Irish return to action next weekend at the Red Desert Classic hosted by Southern Utah. Notre Dame opens action at 2:30 p.m. ET, Friday, March 1 against Utah Valley State. The Irish will also play Baylor (twice), Southern Utah and Cal State Bakersfield.