April 16, 2024123456789RHE
Notre Dame03002020X7120
Win: DJ Helwig (1-0) 3.020013
Loss: Krier (1-3) 3.043320
Renfro (VALPO) 412010
Ryan (VALPO) 402110
TJ Williams (ND) 513200
Connor Hincks (ND) 423301
Brady Gumpf (ND) 403100
Notre Dame Nips Valpo in One-Run Affair
Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Notre Dame Nips Valpo in One-Run Affair
Carson Husmann homered in the ninth to pull Valpo to within one on Tuesday.

The Valparaiso University baseball team gave host Notre Dame just about all it could handle, but the Fighting Irish fended off the Beacons for a 7-6 victory on Tuesday at Frank Eck Stadium in Notre Dame, Ind. Carson Husmann (Hanna, Ind. / South Central [Bradley]) hit a late three-run shot for the Beacons.

How It Happened

  • Valpo starter Kaleb Krier (Altoona, Iowa / Southeast Polk [DMACC]) worked a 1-2-3 first with help from a nifty play by Alex Ryan (Lake Mills, Wis. / Lakeside Lutheran) in center field.
  • Notre Dame got three runs in the second to take a 3-0 lead.
  • Krier bounced back from the three-run frame to work his second perfect inning of the day in the third, delivering a 1-2-3.
  • The Beacons went to the bullpen in the fourth, and righty Adam Guazzo (Huntley, Ill. / Huntley) sent down the Fighting Irish in order, the third time in four innings that Valpo pitching worked a flawless frame.
  • A two-out rip by Ryan Maka (Oak Forest, Ill. / Oak Forest) in the top of the fifth drove in a pair, reducing the Notre Dame lead to one at 3-2.
  • The Fighting Irish responded in the bottom of the fifth with two runs of their own including a two-out triple to drive in the second run of the frame and extend the lead back to three at 5-2.
  • A leadoff double by Brady Renfro (Antigo, Wis. / Antigo) started the sixth, then Ryan ripped a single to left and Renfro crossed the plate to cut the lead to 5-3.
  • Notre Dame had the bases loaded with only one away in the sixth, but Jake Jakubowski (Lake in the Hills, Ill. / Huntley [Heartland]) – who had entered mid-inning amidst a jam – worked out of it with no damage done as the hosts stranded the max. That kept the game very much within reach at 5-3 through six. Valpo had a chance of its own in the bottom of the inning thanks to a one-out double by Alex Thurston (Fowler, Ind. / Benton Central), but he was left at second.
  • Notre Dame’s Connor Hincks hit a two-run homer in the seventh to move to within a double of the cycle. That expanded the lead to 7-3.
  • Valpo got the tying run to the plate in the eighth, loading the bases with two down, but Notre Dame worked out of it with nothing across.
  • A big swing by Husmann made it interesting in the top of the ninth as his three-run jack slimmed the Notre Dame lead to one. However, the Fighting Irish escaped with the win.

Inside the Game

  • Husmann’s homer was his third in the last four games after he had two in his first 25 games. This was the 25th home run of his collegiate career.
  • Renfro and Ryan had two hits apiece as part of Valpo’s 10-hit effort. The game was played quite evenly with Notre Dame owning a slight 12-10 edge in the hit column and Valpo owning a 4-3 edge in walks.
  • This was Valpo’s seventh one-run game of the season and the team fell to 2-5 in such contests.
  • Valpo lost its 16th straight head-to-head matchup with Notre Dame, but nine of the last 10 meetings have been decided by four runs or fewer.
  • Valpo had a prior one-run loss against the Irish – then No. 8 nationally – on April 27, 2021 by a score of 8-7. Valpo also fell 4-3 in 2019 and 6-5 in 2018 but hasn’t been able to get over the hump against its instate foe.
  • Valpo’s last three one-run losses have all come against stiff competition – one power-5 opponent (Notre Dame), one nationally-ranked opponent (Campbell) and one nationally-ranked power-5 opponent (Vanderbilt.)

Up Next

Valpo (11-23) will begin a three-game weekend series on Friday at 3 p.m. against Missouri State at Emory G. Bauer Field. The game will air on ESPN+ with links to live video and stats available on ValpoAthletics.com.