April 12, 2013
PITTSBURGH – Ethan Mildren (JR/Hopwood, Pa.) tossed a complete game three hit shutout as the University of Pittsburgh baseball team (22-9, 4-3 Big East) bested No. 16 Notre Dame (19-12, 4-6 Big East), 4-0, this evening at Cost Field.
“I think the storyline today was definitely Ethan Mildren. He pitched outstanding,” said head coach Joe Jordano. “Notre Dame is 16th ranked team in the country, and deservedly so, and Ethan pitched a near perfect game. He was in total command and I thought that we played some solid defense behind him as well. Notre Dame hit the ball hard at times and we were in the right spots. We also had some timely hits so overall it was a good team win for us lead by Ethan. “
Mildren (6-2), who has pitched three-consecutive complete games, registered the win after going the distance and allowing a mere three hits while striking out three on 121 pitches. Pat Connaughton (0-2) took the loss for Notre Dame.
The Panthers got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning. Sam Parente (SR/Pittston, Pa.) lead off the inning with single through the right side of the infield for Pitt’s first hit of the day. Following a pair of outs, Stephen Vranka (JR/Monroeville, Pa.) came through with a clutch triple off the wall in right field to give Pitt a 1-0 lead.
Pitt tacked on a pair of runs in the home half of the fifth to extend its lead to 3-0. Casey Roche (JR/Downingtown, Pa.) started the rally with a leadoff double. A Boo Vazquez (SO/Youngstown, Ohio) groundout advanced Roche 90 feet to third which allowed him to score on a sacrifice fly from Elvin Soto (SO/New York, N.Y.). Steven Shelinsky Jr. (JR/Yardley, Pa.) kept the inning alive with a two-out single and was rewarded with a run after a Parente triple to right center.
While the Panther bats were providing run support Mildren was cruising on the mound allowing a lone baserunner, who reached on an error, between the second and sixth innings. In the top of the seventh, Notre Dame drew a one out walk but Mildren quickly got out of the jam forcing Blaise Lezynski to ground into an inning ending 3-6-1 double play.
Soto added to the Pitt lead in the bottom of the seventh when he blasted his fourth home run of the year, a solo shot, into deep right field to make the score 4-0.
In the top of the eighth, Mildren allowed his first hit since the first and walked a batter to put runners on first and second with two outs but was able to maintain his shutout with a strikeout of Zak Kutsulis.
With over 100 pitches thrown going into the ninth, Mildren came out and retired the Irish in order for his seventh-career complete game and fourth of the season.
The Panthers and Irish will be back in action tomorrow, Saturday, April 13, when they faceoff at 3 p.m. Matt Wotherspoon (JR/Mountain Top, Pa.) (4-1, 3.09 ERA) will get the ball for Pitt while Notre Dame will send Adam Norton (7-0, 1.72 ERA) to the mound in the second game of the series.