Irwin Fires Second No-No This Season In Split

16, 2008

Game One Box | Game Two Box

Jess Irwin (pictured) threw her second no-hitter
of the season in the opener for Madonna in an 8-0 win.

LIVONIA, Mich. - - Freshman Jess Irwin’s (Monroe, Mich.) threw her second no-hitter of the season in game one but took the hard luck loss in game two as the Madonna softball team split its Wednesday double header with visiting Siena Heights at University field. MU took game one 8-0 in five innings but fell in the night cap 7-5. The split puts MU at 21-11-1 overall and 9-3 in Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference play. SHU is now 12-24 overall and 5-9 in WHAC action.

Irwin worked out of trouble on a number of occasions in the opener, including in the top of the third, walking the lead off hitter Hillary Day and Day advanced to third on a throwing error by the MU infield off the bat of Kina Williams. Tina DePew then hit into the rare 3-4-2 double play as Cat Sidor (Livonia, Mich.) fielded the ball off of DePew’s bat, threw to Brittney Scero (Canton, Mich.) at first for the first out and Scero then fired home to Danielle Richardson (Flint, Mich.) to cut down Day at home and keep the game scoreless.

Neither team could crack the run column until MU pushed across two runs in the bottom of the third. Kelly Lesko (Trenton, Mich.) walked to lead off the frame and came home on a Sidor double to left center to make it 1-0. Tedi Johnston (New Boston, Mich.) followed Sidor’s double with a two-bagger of her own to score Sidor and make it 2-0.

The Crusaders blew the game open in the fourth, plating six runs to make it 8-0. Ashley Shay (Garden City, Mich.) led off with a walk. Pinch runner Tara LaMilza (St. Clair Shores, Mich.) was cut down on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Mary Kate Setta (Grass Lake, Mich.). Kathleen Smiley (Wixom, Mich.) walked and both runners advanced on a passed ball to put runners at second and third with just one out.

Lesko singled to left field to plate Setta and make it 3-0. Both runners stole bases and Scero drove in Smiley on a bunt single to push the lead to 4-0. After Scero stole second, Sidor drove in both Lesko and Scero on a single to right to make it 6-0 and after moving up on the throw that tried to cut Scero down at home, she moved to third after the throw was misplayed by the Saints.

SHU brought in Kim Topolewski to try and stem the tide but Topolewski hit Johnston with the third pitch she threw to put runners at first and third. Karen House (Columbiaville, Mich.) ran for Johnston and stole second. Christina Finch (Albion, Mich.) singled to left and was then run for by Rachael Kethe (Lennox, Mich.) A fielding error by SHU allowed House to score to make it 8-0.

Irwin had more than enough to work with and shut the door in the fifth, getting the final out via strike out and post her second no-hitter of the season. The freshman righty struck out five in her complete game effort. Sidor and Finch each had two hits with Sidor adding three RBIs in the win. Dani Bailey took the loss for SHU, giving up seven runs and six hits.

SHU got on the board with two runs in the top of the first off of starter Liz Ballinger (St. Johns, Mich.) but MU answered back with a run in the bottom of the inning as Scero led off with another bunt single and after moving up on a wild pitch, came home on a Sidor single to right to cut the Saints’ lead to 2-1.

The Saints made it 3-1 in the top of the second and it stayed 3-1 until the bottom of the fifth when the Crusaders plated three to take the lead at 4-3.

Lesko led off with a single and moved up on a Scero knock through the right side. Sidor then hit a single of her own to score Lesko and make it 3-2. After a pop out, Finch hit into a fielder’s choice that cut Scero down at home for the second out of the inning. LaMilza ran for Finch and stole second to put runners at second and third for Richardson. The MU catcher then delivered a double to left that scored LaMilza and Sidor and give the home side the lead at 4-3.

SHU tied the game in the sixth as Williams hit a home run off of MU reliever Michelle Henning (Toledo, Ohio) to make it 4-4.

MU took the lead back in the bottom of the inning as Smiley singled to open the inning and after moving up on a Lesko sac bunt and a wild pitch, came home on a Scero squeeze bunt to give the royal and gold a 5-4 lead heading into the top of the seventh.

Irwin then came in to try and nail down her second save of the season but was greeted rudely by Jess Williams and her home run over the left field wall to square the game at 5-5. SHU tacked on two more runs with two outs to take a 7-5 lead.

The Crusaders got a runner to second in the bottom of the inning as Shay doubled with two outs but Setta grounded out to end the threat and give SHU the win at 7-5.

Irwin took the loss, giving up three runs on two hits. All of SHU’s runs except Williams’ homer came with two outs and the Crusaders were charged with six errors. Sidor was 3-for-3 and Lesko went 2-for-2 in the night cap for MU. Sidor and Richardson each drove in two runs.

The Crusaders travel to Fort Wayne, Ind., on Friday to battle with the Warriors of Indiana Tech. IIT sits one game behind MU in the race for the WHAC regular season title. First pitch in the Hoosier state is slated for 3pm. MU then comes home for senior day on Saturday against UM-Dearborn. Action gets underway on Saturday at 1pm.

Patrick Moore - Director of Media Relations
(734) 432-5834