#21/22 Irish Close Homestand Against Toledo Wednesday
April 16, 2014HOOSIER SPORTS 365
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Returning to the field for the first time since recording one of the biggest wins in program history last weekend, the University of Notre Dame softball team caps a brief three-game homestand on Wednesday when it welcomes Toledo to Melissa Cook Stadium. First pitch of the non-conference showdown between the Irish and Rockets is scheduled for 6 p.m. (ET).
Live video coverage will be available at UND.com on WatchND, and through the WatchND app.
No. 21/22 Notre Dame (25-9) was triumphant on Sunday in the first Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) game in the history of Melissa Cook Stadium, defeating No. 7/8 Florida State by a final score of 8-5. It was the highest ranked opponent ever conquered by the Irish on their home field, and the highest ranked win for any Notre Dame team since a 3-2 victory over No. 4 Nebraska on April 23, 2002. The Irish enter the week as the ACC leader in batting average (.338), doubles (69, 2.03 doubles per game leads the NCAA) and slugging percentage (.515).
Notre Dame has won all 16 of its prior meetings with Toledo (14-27), including 13 all-time victories on the Notre Dame campus. The Irish and Rockets will play for the seventh time at Melissa Cook Stadium since the 2009 season.
Fans can follow live stats for Wednesday’s game via CBS GameTracker by visiting UND.com.
• Notre Dame capped the historic first Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) game at Melissa Cook Stadium with three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, defeating No. 7/8 Florida State 8-5 on Sunday. The Seminoles scored a dramatic comeback of their own, 9-7 in nine innings, in the nightcap to split the series.
• Notre Dame's victory in game one was the program's 22nd all-time win against a top 10 opponent, and the team's highest ranked opponent defeated since a 3-2 win over No. 4 Nebraska on April 23, 2002.
• Head Coach Deanna Gumpf tied former baseball coach Paul Mainieri for second all-time in baseball/softball wins at Notre Dame with career victory number 533 in the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader against Florida State. Gumpf’s squads have averaged exactly 41 wins per season during her 13-year tenure.
• The Irish outscored Florida State 15-14 during the twin bill, and the team’s 15 total runs were the most allowed to a single opponent by the Seminoles this season. Notre Dame scored eight of its runs off Florida State ace Lacey Waldrop, who has only surrendered a total of 40 runs (0.87 ERA) in 176.2 innings pitched this season.
• Freshman outfielder Karley Wester led all Notre Dame hitters with a combined 7-for-9 (.778) day at the plate on Sunday against Florida State, adding two stolen bases and two runs. During her current 10-game hitting streak, Wester is batting a blistering .595 (22-for-37) with a double, five RBI, a .634 on-base percentage, 10 stolen bases and 10 runs scored.
• Junior infielder Katey Haus hit the second Notre Dame grand slam of the ACC season in game two against Florida State on Sunday, launching a 2-1 pitch over the scoreboard in left field at Melissa Cook Stadium to put the Irish in front 7-3 in the bottom of the sixth inning. Sophomore infielder Micaela Arizmendi connected on the first ever Notre Dame ACC grand slam in the second inning of the series finale at Georgia Tech on March 9 in Atlanta, Ga.
• Notre Dame enters its ninth consecutive week ranked in the national Top 25 after being tabbed No. 21 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball and No. 22 in the USA TODAY/NFCA Coaches polls on Tuesday.
On This Date...
Head coach Deanna Gumpf improved to 5-0 on April 16 at the helm of the Irish with a 2-0 shutout victory at Michigan State last season. Gumpf’s squads hold a cumulative 27-14 run advantage in those five wins.
Irish Win ACC Home Debut
Florida State became the highest ranked league foe that Notre Dame has ever defeated, as well as the highest ranked visiting team to fall on the Notre Dame campus. The Irish have now won their conference home opening game in four straight seasons.
With the series split with the Seminoles, the Irish are now 4-4 all-time against ranked league opponents at Melissa Cook Stadium.
One Win Away From 100...
Winter earned the win in game one of the doubleheader, surrendering five runs in a complete game effort against a Florida State offense that averages nearly seven runs per game. She added an inning in relief in game two against the Seminoles, striking out two Florida State hitters.
The Offensive Juggernaut Rolls On
With a .338 team clip, the Irish are among the national top 10 in batting average, checking in with eighth-best average in the country. Notre Dame led the NCAA with a .343 final average in 2010.
Notre Dame also assumed the ACC lead in slugging percentage this week with a .515 clip, which ranks 18th among all teams in the NCAA.
Scoring In Bunches Against FSU
The Irish posted four innings where they scored two or more runs against Florida State pitching, including a five-run bottom of the sixth frame in game two. In their 45 games this season, Florida State has only allowed two or more runs for an entire game on 11 occasions.
Wester Does It All At Top Of The Order
In fact, of Wester’s 12 hits against North Carolina and Florida State, seven were officially ruled infield singles. The speedster from Huntington Beach, Calif. did damage once she reached the base paths as well, stealing four bases and scoring five runs for the Irish offense.
Wester, Notre Dame’s team leader with a .442 batting average, 50 hits and 20 stolen bases overall in 2014, is batting .643 (18-for-28) in her last seven games since moving to the top of the Irish lineup.
All Regulars Over .300
All nine regular Notre Dame starters, who have each started at least 23 games in 2014, are currently batting .300 or above, making the Irish the only team in the ACC with its entire regular starting lineup over the benchmark. Six Notre Dame starters are batting .320 or greater through 34 games.
Coach Gumpf Headed Toward The Top
Gumpf, the Irish softball career wins leader, tied former baseball coach Paul Mainieri (1995-2006) for second place all-time at 533 wins. Legendary Notre Dame baseball manager Jake Kline (1934-75) won 558 career games in his 42 seasons at the helm of the Irish.
Irish In The ACC
Following Sunday’s win against Florida State, the team’s first ever ACC conference victory at Melissa Cook Stadium, the Irish are now a combined 111-26 (.810) all-time against the current league membership.
Irish Against The Opposition
The teams will meet for the seventh time at Melissa Cook Stadium since Notre Dame moved into its new home during the middle of the 2008 season. The Irish most recently claimed a 9-1 decision in five innings and an 8-0 win in six frames over Toledo during a non-conference doubleheader on March 28, 2012.