Notre Dame Evens Series Against Cal Poly With 1-0 Victory
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Second baseman Frank DeSico's infield single to the left side with two outs in the ninth inning pushed across the only run of the game as No. 17 Notre Dame edged No. 20 Cal Poly 1-0 in the second game of a three-game non-conference baseball series Friday night before 2,076 in Baggett Stadium.
The result evened the series at a game apiece -- Cal Poly won Thursday's opener 6-3 -- with the deciding game scheduled for Saturday at noon. The Mustangs fell to 15-3 on the year while the Irish improved to 11-5.
Shortstop Lane Richards lined Reed Reilly's first pitch of the ninth inning down the left-field line for a leadoff double. He moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by center fielder Kyle Richardson. After a shallow fly ball to center field for the second out, DeSico grounded the ball deep to the hole at shortstop for an infield single, Richards scoring on the play.
Junior center fielder David Armendariz (pictured at right) led off the bottom of the ninth with a single up the middle, but Notre Dame closer Dan Slania picked up his fourth save with two called third strikes and an infield pop-up.
The win went to Irish right-hander Adam Norton (5-0), who pitched eight scoreless innings and scattered seven hits with one walk and five strikeouts.
Reilly (1-1) suffered the loss, allowing the only run of the game and two hits in 1 1/3 innings. Mustang starter Matt Imhof tossed 7 2/3 scoreless innings, striking out a career-high 11 Irish batters while giving up two walks and six hits.
Three Mustang runners reached third base in the game but Cal Poly stranded a total of 10 base runners, including first and second in the third inning and first and third in both the sixth and seventh frames.
Armendariz and freshman designated hitter Brian Mundell both had two of Cal Poly's eight hits. Notre Dame also collected eight hits, including two each by left fielder Ryan Bull and third baseman Eric Jagielo.
Cal Poly, which suffered its first loss in eight home games, has played in seven one-run games this season, including three 1-0 contests. The Mustangs are 5-2 in one-run games and have won two of three 1-0 contests.
Friday's crowd was the largest at Baggett Stadium in six years when the Mustangs hosted then two-time defending national champion Oregon State on March 25, 2007, a game witnessed by 2,367 fans. Friday's 2,076 is the sixth-largest crowd in Baggett Stadium's 13-year history.
Sophomore right-hander Bryan Granger (3-1, 3.04 ERA) will start on the mound for Cal Poly on Saturday, facing Notre Dame freshman right-hander David Hearne (0-1, 5.12 ERA).