Notre Dame remained in second place in the BIG EAST Conference standings after Sunday's sweep.

Syracuse Swept By Irish In Front Of Packed House

April 26, 2009

Game 1: Box Score | Box Score Get Acrobat Reader
Game 2: Box Score | Box Score Get Acrobat Reader
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NOTRE DAME, Ind. – A standing-room only crowd of 782 fans packed into Melissa Cook Stadium on Sunday to watch the Notre Dame softball team take two BIG EAST Conference games from Syracuse, 4-0 and 6-3. Notre Dame improved to 34-14 overall and 15-3 in BIG EAST play. The Orange fell to 28-18 overall with an 11-9 league record.

Brittney Bargar (20-9) picked up two wins without allowing a run through 9.0 innings pitched across the doubleheader. The righty gave up four hits in the opening shutout and stepped in to toss 2.0 innings in game two to secure the sweep.

Linda Kohan and Christine Lux each recorded two of Notre Dame’s eight hits in the second contest.

Two runs in the first inning of the day began with a Beth Northway lead-off single. Kohan laid down a sacrifice bunt and Lux drove an RBI-double down the right field line for the first score. Dani Miller’s hard grounder to third was thrown away by Syracuse’s Hallie Gibbs, buying enough time for Lux to hustle home from second.

Erin Marrone saved a run from scoring in the third with an over-the-shoulder snag in right field, and Kohan bounced a home run off the scoreboard in the bottom half of the frame to give Notre Dame a 3-0 lead.

Katie Fleury was walked in the bottom of the sixth and Marrone followed with a single through the right side. Both runners were in scoring position when Alexia Clay’s infield groundout plated Fleury from third for the final run.

Jenna Caira (14-8) gave up two earned runs and four hits in 4.0 innings. She took the loss for Syracuse. Brittany Gardner tossed 2.0 innings of two-hit ball for the Orange with one earned run.

Kohan and Brianna Jorgensborg registered both of Notre Dame’s sacrifices.

–Game 2–

Heather Johnson and Kohan had singles in the top of the first but the Irish had to wait until the fifth inning to score a run. In fact, Amy Kelley homered for Syracuse in the fourth to force Notre Dame to come from behind for the win. The Irish scored three runs in both the fifth and sixth innings for the victory.

Lux had a lead-off double in the fourth but was stranded on base. It was a different story in the fifth when Alexa Maldonado was hit by a pitch, Johnson was walked and Lux strolled back to the plate with two outs. Against a full count, Lux hammered a stand-up triple down the right field line to clear the bases as the Irish took a 2-1 lead. One pitch later, Miller singled to right to score Lux.

Gibbs brought the Orange to within one (3-2) with a solo home run to left in the top of the sixth. Gaby Torzillie doubled in a run just past an outstretched diving effort by Maldonado and the game was suddenly tied, 3-3.

Clay singled to start the sixth and was replaced by pinch runner Christine Farrell. Farrell stole second before Northway was walked. When Kohan singled down the left field line, Farrell came home to score and Northway crossed the plate after an Orange fielding error. Johnson’s fourth sacrifice fly of the season pushed Kohan ahead one more base for Notre Dame’s sixth run.

Kelley had two hits for Syracuse and Caira was charged with her second loss of the day.

Jody Valdivia started the game from the circle for Notre Dame and gave up three earned runs on four hits with two strikeouts.

Notre Dame gets back on the road this week with conference trips to Providence (April 30) and Georgetown (May 1).