Mar. 22, 1997

Seton Hall Takes Two From Notre Dame

SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. — David Kim’s three-run homersparked a Seton Hall comeback in the opener and juniorrighthander Jason Grilli held Notre Dame to three hits in thenightcap, while receiving plenty of offensive help, as thePirates swept a Saturday doubleheader from the Irish, 5-4 and16-0, in both teams’ opening day of the Big EAST Conferenceplay.

Seton Hall (10-7) came back from a 4-1 deficit in theopening seven-inning game before belting out 20 hits to run awaywith the nine-inning game.

Notre Dame (9-10) was done in by two costly errors by seniorthird baseman J.J. Brock in the third inning of the first game,moments before Kim’s game-tying home run. The 16-run deficitrepresents the biggest shutout loss by a Notre Dame team in 11years, since the 1986 team mande nine errors in a 18-0 loss atLewis University.

Junior righthander Brian Ridley (4-0) went the distance forthe opening win, allowing seven hits and one walk over the fullseven innings while striking out four Notre Dame batters.

Irish senior righthander Darin Schmalz (2-2) suffered theloss, after allowing a homer for the first time since 1995(spanning more than 110 innings). Schmalz was touched for eighthits over six innings, while allowing five runs (four earned)and one walk, while recording two strikeouts.

Notre Dame sophomore Brad Lidge (2-2) didn’t last throughthe second inning of the nightcap, allowing six runs, six hitsand a walk while recording four outs.

The highly-touted Grili (2-0) struck out nine Irish battersover eight full innings, while allowing just three hits and twowalks. Notre Dame had three other baserunners, who all reachedon defensive miscues, but Grilli faced just 29 batters. CatcherDan Hummel threw out attempted basestealers Pat O’Keefe andRandall Brooks in the first inning and Grilli induced AllenGreene into a 4-6-3 double play after Dan Leatherman had walkedin the seventh.

While Kim’s home run highlighted the opener, it was afifth-inning double from Mike Condon that plated thegame-winner. Kim drew a one-out walk, moved up on a groundoutand took third on a single from Hummel before Condon sent theclutch hit down the leftfield line.

Notre Dame opened the day with a three-run first inning. O’Keefe led off with a single to center field and Brooks broughthim home with his third home run of the season over theleftfield fence. Freshman second baseman Brant Ust kept thingsgoing with a double to centerfield, scoring moments later on asacrifice fly from sophomore DH Jeff Wagner.

Seton Hall scored in the top of the second, behind a doublefrom Condon and single by Brian McGee, but the Irish went backahead by three in the top of the third, after a leadoff walk byO’Keefe and one-out singles from Ust and Amrhein.

The Pirates answered with three runs in the bottom of theinning to even things at 4-4. John Bravette led off with aroller to the left side, reaching base when Brock could not comeup with the play. Alex Melconian then hit a grounder to Brock,who threw to Ust at second base for the force. But the throwwas short and Ust cound not handle the bounce, with both runnerssafe on the play. Kim then sent a shot into a wind that wasblowing out, with the ball flying over the fence in theleft-center field for the crucial three-run blast.

Seton Hall opened the second game with four straight hits. Melconian led off with a double and Kim followed with a singlebefore Craig Zimmerli’s blooper fell inside the rightfield line. Hummel then smacked a RBI single up the middle, Mark Racciopoadded a one-out sacrifice fly and McGee hit a run-scoring singleto left for a 4-0 Pirate lead.

The hosts added three runs in the second. Bravette drew aleadoff walk and moved up on Melconian’s sacrifice bunt beforeKim’s RBI double ended Lidge’s day. Zimmerli, who had four hitsin the second game, kept things going with a single vs. seniorlefthander Wally Widelski and Mike Condon loaded the bases witha two-out walk before Raccioppo belted a two-run single tocenter.

The Pirates added three more runs in the third, behind a RBIsingle from Bravette and a two-run single by Zimmerli. SetonHall kept rolling with four runs in the sixth, as errors byBrock and centerfielder Brooks led to two unearned runs.

Notre Dame failed to advance a runner to third base vs.Grilli, with just three baserunners getting to second base. Brock touched Grilli first, on a double down the leftfield line,and Amrhein extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a smashthat was knocked down by shortstop Condon. Brooks added NotreDame’s third hit in the sixth, a single to left field.

Seton Hall 5, Notre Dame 4Notre Dame    301 000 0   -  4 7 2Seton Hall    013 010 x   -  5 8 0    ND: Schmalz and Amrhein. SH: Ridley and Hummel.2B: Ust (ND), Condon 2 (SH).  HR: Brooks (ND), Kim (SH). WP: Ridley (4-0). LP: Schmalz (2-2).Attend: 200.Seton Hall 16, Notre Dame 0Notre Dame    000 000 000  -  0  4 3 Seton Hall    430 034 11x  - 16 20 2ND: Lidge, Widelski (2), McKeown (3), Balicki (5), Xalita (7)and Wagner. SH: Grilli, Probst (9) and Hummel. 2B: Brock (ND),Melconian (SH), Kim (SH), Condon (SH). 3B: Kish (SH). HR: Robinson J. (SH). WP: Grilli (2-0). LP: Lidge (2-2)Attend: 170.