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ND Softball: Team travels for second tourney

Megan Finneran | Friday, February 15, 2013

 

With one tournament of outdoor competition under their belts, the Irish next travel to San Diego, for the Campbell/Cartier Classic. This will be Notre Dame’s third appearance at the tournament, where the squad has gone 2-4 overall.

The biggest challenge of the weekend will be Oklahoma, a team ranked No. 1/2. The Irish have never beaten a No. 1-ranked foe in program history, but are looking forward to the opportunity.

Undefeated Oklahoma will be the final game of the five-game weekend. The squad will also face Washington (4-2), Cal Poly (1-4) and San Diego State (3-2). 

“Our focus going into this weekend is going to be energy and stringing some hits together to keep our momentum going,” senior catcher Amy Buntin said. “I think if we can do that we’ll end the weekend on a very positive note.”

Last weekend the Irish took two big wins at the Charlotte Fast Pitch Classic. Notre Dame beat Charlotte 5-1 and Presbyterian 8-5, led by senior pitcher Brittany O’Donnell. Sophomore catcher Cassidy Whidden hit a three-run home run against Charlotte on Saturday afternoon to fuel the Irish offense. Sophomore infielder Jenna Simon led in the final game of the tournament against Presbyterian with six hits, four stolen bases and four runs.

In each of its two losses, the squad only fell by one run. This weekend the Irish look to make minor improvements to finish close games similar to the 1-0 and 6-5 losses to Wisconsin last weekend. The concentration will be more on offense this weekend as the team works toward scoring more runs.

“We have been focusing on our bats lately and breaking down our fundamentals,” Buntin said. “Our defense is solid.”

The weekend will begin with the first pitch against Washington at 9 a.m. PST Friday morning. Friday afternoon the Irish will face Cal Poly at 1:30 p.m. Saturday will bring Cal Poly again at 11:15 a.m., followed by San Diego State at 6 p.m. The weekend will conclude with Oklahoma Sunday morning at 9 a.m.

Contact Megan Finneran at mfinnera@nd.edu