The Notre Dame baseball team picked-up a pair of wins on Friday at the Irish Classic in Cary, NC. The Irish (7-1) downed UMass 9-4 in Friday afternoon's first game and then edged Tennessee 3-2 in 12 innings in the nightcap at the USA Baseball Complex.
Matt Ternowcheck (1-0) struckout eight in 5.0 relief innings to earn his first win of the season in the victory over the Minutemen. The sophomore retired the first nine batters he faced after entering the game in the fifth inning in relief of Donnie Hissa.
UMass catcher Brandon Walsh led off the eighth inning with a triple. Ternowcheck struckout the next two batters before hitting Rich Graef. He fanned the next batter to end the inning and then fired a perfect ninth to end the game.
Irish first baseman Trey Mancini launched a three-run home run in the fourth inning. It was his second of the season. Mancini left the game in the ninth inning and did not play in the night cap against Tennessee. Irish catcher Forrest Johnson connected on a three-run double in the second inning as well.
Ryan Bull's walk-off single scored Zak Kutsulis in the bottom of the 12th for the win over the Vols in the second game. It was Bull's only hit in six at-bats on the night after he collected three hits against UMass.
Fighting Irish starter Sean Fitzgerald fanned eight and allowed just a run on five hits in 8.0 innings in the win over the Vols, but did not factor in the decision. Closer Dan Slania (1-0) fired the last 3.1 perfect innings in his longest outing and first win of the season.
Centerfielder Charlie Markson and second baseman Frank DeSico each had three hits in the dramatic win. Notre Dame's 7-1 start is the program's best through eight games since 1960.
Notre Dame next faces Virginia Tech Saturday night at 6:00 ET. Irish head coach Mik Aoki was once an assistant on current Hokie head coach Pete Hughes' staff when Hughes was the head coach at Boston College.