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Louisville drops series opener in South Bend 4-3

The Cards will attempt to even the series Saturday at 3:00 PM

Photo by Karthik Kalvakuri (University of Louisville Athletics)

Louisville (18-3, 2-2 ACC) was not able to wake-up the bats in a cold, dreary day in South Bend, dropping their first true road game of the season to a struggling Notre Dame (11-8, 3-4 ACC) team. The only game in which the Cards recorded fewer runs and hits this season came against Bowling Green in a 2-1 victory.

The pitching staff, which consisted of Ryan Hawks (L, 4-1), Evan Webster, and Tucker Biven, held the Fighting Irish nearly 1.5 runs below their season average. Hawks (5 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 6 K’s) was in cruise control through the 4th inning, but Notre Dame started to barrel up on a few balls as they became more familiar with him through the middle innings.

Webster (.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R) made his 8th appearance of the season, facing just four batters before tossing the ball to Biven (2.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K’s). I know I sound like a broken record, but the freshman continues to be one of the more consistent, reliable arms in Roger Williams’ bullpen.

After 2.1 scoreless innings on Friday evening, Biven lowered his ERA to 0.69 in 13 innings of work. Win or lose today, Louisville has an absolute stud that will be in the red and black for years to come.

Christian Knapczyk (2-5) and Gavin Kilen (2-4, 2 RBI) were responsible for four of the six hits for the Cards. It was just one of those days where nothing went right at the plate as they could not shift the momentum from the Fighting Irish dugout. That’s why you play a three game series.

Kilen, another freshman that you’ve heard me rant about for months, continues to see the ball very well and displays a very sound glove at second base. He is now third on the team with a .333 batting average.

With the loss, the Cards are now 36-8 all-time against against Notre Dame. Game two is scheduled for tomorrow at 3:00 PM with Greg Farone (1-1, 3.98) starting on the mound for Louisville. He will face Jack Findlay (3-0, 1.99 ERA), who has been the best pitcher this season for the Irish. The game will be televised on ACCNX and can be heard on 93.9 The Ville and 970 WGTK.

Let’s hope it doesn’t get too windy in South Bend tomorrow. IYKYK.