Softball Upsets #23 Notre Dame, 4-2
March 6, 2004
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Behind a complete game by sophomore pitcher Jenna Busa (Lexington, Mass.), the University of Massachusetts softball team (5-7) defeated 23rd-ranked Notre Dame (10-6), 4-2, this afternoon at the FAU Worth Invitational. Busa scattered eight hits over seven innings as she improved to 3-4 this year. She allowed one walk and struck out two batters.
Massachusetts struck first in the bottom of the third inning by scoring a pair of runs on just one hit. The Minutewomen loaded the bases with one out on a single by senior Aisha Franke (Philadelphia, Pa.), a walk to sophomore Katie Jo Kelley (Rainier, Ore.) and a Notre Dame error on a bunt by freshman Candice Molinari (Glendora, Calif.) which allowed her to reach base. A walk by senior KC Budrewicz (Buckland, Mass.) drove in the first run of the game and then senior Jamie Cahalan (Mesa, Ariz.) was hit by a pitch to give UMass a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the fourth, the Irish attempted to cut into the UMass lead, but Meagan Ruthrauff was gunned down at the plate by Franke in center field trying to score from second base on a single by Mallorie Lenn. Cahalan blocked the plate and never allowed Ruthrauff to touch it.
The Minutewomen then added two insurance runs in the bottom of fourth to take a 4-0 lead. Sophomore Kristi Stefanoni (Columbus, N.J.) scored on a wild pitch after she led off with a walk and stole second and third bases. Franke, who also walked, scored one batter later on a fielders choice by junior Hilary Puglia (Stoneham, Mass.).
Those runs for UMass turned out to be important as Stephanie Brown got Notre Dame on the board in the top of the sixth with a one-out RBI single to right. Two batters later, she was driven home on a two-out double by Nicole Wicks to the warning track in left-center field. Busa got out the jam without any further damage.
The Minutewomen will next take on host-school Florida Atlantic at 5:00 p.m. this afternoon. The FAU Worth Invitational continues through tomorrow. UMass will face North Carolina at 10:00 a.m. and then Florida International at 12:00 p.m.