The Valparaiso University baseball team suffered a 10-3 loss to Notre Dame on Tuesday night at Frank Eck Stadium. Giovanni Garbella (San Diego, Calif. / Cathedral Catholic) provided a bright spot for the Crusaders by continuing his recent stretch of offensive success with two doubles.
How It Happened
- Garbella crushed one 395 feet to deep right center in the second inning, but it banged off the top of the wall for a two-out two-bagger. He was left stranded as the game remained scoreless.
- The bottom of the inning saw the Fighting Irish (19-22) get on the board with a four-spot against Valpo starter Michael Mommersteeg (St. Thomas, Ont., Canada / St. Joseph’s). Mommersteeg’s throwing error on a sacrifice bunt led to most of the damage, as three of the four runs were unearned. Nick Podkul’s two-run double was the highlight of the uprising.
- The Crusaders (16-23) were handed a scoring chance in the top of the third as Notre Dame starter Ryan Smoyer issued back-to-back walks to start the inning, but Valpo walked away empty handed.
- The Fighting Irish tacked on three more in the third against reliever Alex Dirienzo (Somerset, Pa. / Somerset [Akron]). This time it was Nick Neville with a two-run double before Jake Shepski tacked on an RBI single and was cut down trying to move up to second on a strong throw from Valpo right fielder Christian Barczi (Naperville, Ill. / Naperville North).
- The Crusaders took a bite out of the deficit in the fourth inning as they posted a three spot against Smoyer. Garbella continued his recent tear with his second double of the game to drive in Barczi, who had doubled to start the inning. Scott Kapers (Schererville, Ind. / Mount Carmel) grounded a single up the middle to drive in a pair, making it 7-3 Notre Dame.
- Hayden Kissee (Indianapolis, Ind. / Greenfield Central [Kaskasia College]) came in to pitch for Valpo in the fourth and did not allow a run in the fourth or fifth. He exited with two outs and two on in the sixth, and both runners eventually scored and were charged to Kissee. Those runners crossed the dish as part of a three-run triple by Ryan Lidge against Luke VanLanen (Pulaski, Wis. / Pulaski). Lidge reached third as both Garbella and James Stea dove for the ball in left center and neither made the play.
- The Crusaders had a scoring chance with the bases loaded in the seventh, but they failed to score. Valpo went down in order in the eighth and ninth innings.
Inside the Game
- Garbella now has eight doubles and 12 extra-base hits this season. He has multiple hits in four of his last six.
- Shaikin drew a walk, extending his on-base streak to 23.
- Smoyer picked up the win to improve to 3-2, while Mommersteeg was hit with the loss to drop to 1-2.
- Chet Joslyn (Battle Creek, Mich. / Lakeview) and Easton Rhodehouse (Gilbert, Ariz. / Highland) each worked scoreless innings out of the Valpo bullpen.
The Crusaders will travel to Youngstown State for a three-game series beginning on Friday at 4 p.m. CT. Live audio will be available of all three games with Brandon Vickrey providing the play-by-play. Links to audio and stats will be available on ValpoAthletics.com.