Irish Sweep Saturday Doubleheader Over BC; Clinch First ACC Series Win
April 12, 2014HOOSIER SPORTS 365
IRISH PRESS RELEASE
CHICAGO, Ill. - On a special day where the University of Notre Dame baseball team continued its fundraising efforts for the Pete Frates #3 Fund, the Irish got two outstanding pitching performances from RHP Pat Connaughton and LHP Michael Hearne in a Saturday doubleheader sweep over Boston College, 4-2 and 7-0, that clinch the first Atlantic Coast Conference series win in program history.
After mustering just one run on five hits Friday night, the Irish bats made plenty of appearances Saturday as Notre Dame scored 11 runs on 21 hits in two games. The 11 runs would be more than enough for Connaughton and Hearne as they both hurled complete games, both of which were the first in their respective careers.
Connaughton (1-2), had trouble with control in his first handful of starts in the 2014 season, but looked very much in command against the Eagles as he gave up two runs (one each in the eighth and ninth innings) on six hits and walked just one. He also struck out six batters in 116 pitches.
Hearne, meanwhile, baffled BC all day as he held the visitors to just seven hits in earning the shutout. He also walked none and struck out five in 107 pitches.
“I thought both guys were great,” said head coach Mik Aoki. “There were a couple of instances where Pat fell behind on a couple of guys but was able to get himself right back into the count and get them to make weak contact. I thought Mike did the same thing. He was really in command from beginning to end. I thought he pitched to who he was.
“These players have been battling all year. They scrapped through some situations. I didn’t sense any panic. It was a great team win and I’m happy for the guys in getting their first ACC series win.”
Notre Dame totaled five doubles and three triples in the two games in addition to drawing four walks and getting hit five times.
The weekend saw all funds raised get donated to the Pete Frates #3 Fund that supports former Boston College baseball player Pete Frates in his battle with the awful disease ALS. Over 1,000 fans ventured out during the weekend and bought shirts and hats, in addition to their ticket, with all the proceeds going to the fund.
“I’m really appreciative to everyone that came out in support of Pete,” said Aoki. “I thought BC was really gracious in what they were doing with it. I want to thank our players too for their support of this weekend. It was a great weekend all around.”
Notre Dame (14-21, 3-15 ACC) get back into action early next week with a pair of road games. The Irish will head to East Lansing, Mich., for a 3:05 p.m. (ET) Tuesday game against Michigan State. The next day, Notre Dame will bus to Toledo, Ohio for a 7 p.m. contest against Toledo.