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ND Softball: Bargar leads ND into S.C.

Chris Doyen | Friday, March 14, 2008

Coming off a 3-2 weekend in Long Beach, Calif., which led to junior pitcher Brittany Bargar being named Big East Pitcher of the Week, the Irish (10-8) head to Charleston, S.C., to take part in the Charleston Southern University Lowcountry Softball Invitational.

Bargar made five appearances for the Irish last week, pitching 25.1 innings and recording a miniscule ERA of 0.55. In that same period, Bargar struck out 21 compared to only three walks, and allowed only two earned runs.

On the season, Bargar has an 8-5 record and a 1.00 ERA, second among Big East pitchers. Of the 23 runs scored against her on the season, only 11 of them have been earned.

Despite the stellar pitching, the Irish could not register wins against No. 6 UCLA and Long Beach State due to a lack of run support. The offense did show signs of life in a victory over Cal State Northridge last weekend, where freshman Sadie Pitzenberger’s two-run double was all the support that Bargar needed.

The Irish will face Towson (11-7) and Charleston Southern (10-17) on Friday before taking on Campbell (17-8) and a to-be-determined opponent on Saturday.

Towson is coming off of a split with Georgetown in a doubleheader on Wednesday. Towson’s victory in the first game gave them a four-game winning streak that was built mainly on the strength of senior Nina Navarro’s bat. The Towson offense stalled in the nightcap as the Tigers suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of the Hoyas.

Following the early morning game with Towson, the Irish will take on a Charleston Southern team that had a tough series last weekend in the Bulldog Classic in Starkville, Miss. That tournament capped a brutal stretch that included 18 games in only 11 days.

The Buccaneers were able to pull out two victories over Austin Peay, one of which went eight innings, but they also were soundly defeated four times, twice against Mississippi State and twice against Louisiana Tech.

Saturday’s match against Campbell could prove to be a tough test for the Irish, as the Camels emerge from a solid performance in the Stanford University Classic in which they posted victories over Texas Tech, College of Charleston and North Dakota State. Their only losses came in two games against No. 7 Stanford, the first of which was a 2-1 loss.

The Irish begin action at 8:30 Friday morning at Buccaneer Field on the Charleston Southern Campus.