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Michigan defeats Notre Dame to secure midweek win

BY CAITLIN SMITH
Daily Sports Writer
Published April 20, 2010

The Michigan baseball team gave Notre Dame a friendly welcome in a 3-2 contest on Tuesday after the Irish made their first 183-mile trip to Ann Arbor since 1977.

The midweek matchup started off slow, with only one run scored in the first 3 innings. Michigan (6-3 Big Ten, 24-12 overall) looked to get some action started in the bottom of the first inning as freshman centerfielder Patrick Biondi attempted to steal his 24th base of the season. But his effort was cut short as redshirt junior Anthony Toth was called for batter interference, making it a double-play for the Irish.

Senior Mike Dufek got the momentum swinging — literally — by launching a double to right field in the bottom of the fourth, which advanced sophomore designated hitter Coley Crank into scoring position. Sophomore John Lorenz then brought in Crank for his 17th RBI of the season. Senior Mike Kittle followed suit with a single to right field that brought in Dufek and gave the Wolverines a three-run lead.

Senior left-hander Eric Katzman led Michigan on the mound, pitching five full innings and allowing just four hits and one Notre Dame run. Junior pitcher Travis Smith came in for relief of Katzman in the top of the sixth inning, but pitched one inning before irritating his hamstring.

Freshman right-hander Kyle Clark came in and threw three straight strikes on his first batter. Junior pitcher Matt Gerbe also saw action, closing out the game for the Wolverines. Combined, the medley of pitchers allowed two Notre Dame runs.

Michigan has proven this season that it has a versatile selection of pitchers. Just over the past weekend, junior pitcher Tyler Burgoon earned himself Big Ten Conference Pitcher of the Week.

Michigan will travel to South Bend tomorrow to finish out the two-game series against the Irish.