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DePaul Swept in BIG EAST Doubleheader by Notre Dame
Samantha Dodd was 6-for-7 in Saturday's doubleheader and smacked her first home run of the season.


Samantha Dodd was 6-for-7 in Saturday's doubleheader and smacked her first home run of the season.

April 27, 2013

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CHICAGO - Kirsten Verdun's streak of shutouts and scoreless innings came to a sudden halt on Saturday.

Notre Dame's Laura Winter cracked a two-run home run in the first inning as DePaul lost 5-2 in the second game of a BIG EAST Conference doubleheader at Cacciatore Stadium.

Verdun had come into the game with three consecutive shutouts and a string of 19 scoreless innings.

But Notre Dame (37-10, 17-1 in the BIG EAST) followed up that opening salvo with a three-run fifth inning that included a pair of triples.

DePaul (27-18, 13-5) retaliated with single runs in the fourth and fifth that included Verdun's solo home run leading off the fourth. The Blue Demons outhit Notre Dame 9-8.

"The pitching was bad, the defense wasn't very good, and we got enough hits but they weren't bunched together," said DePaul coach Eugene Lenti as his team also dropped the opener 6-3. "We outhit them on the day (21-15), but we didn't score enough runs.

"It all starts with the pitching. Mary Connolly and Morgan Maize did a good job in relief today, but giving up that home run in the first inning put us behind the eight-ball. We're consistent with how we lose. It's always home runs and walks.

"Some of the onus today is on the offense. We left a total of 20 runners on base in the doubleheader, and you can't do that against the good teams."

The Blue Demons just couldn't put together a big inning.

In the fifth, they scored on Connolly's sacrifice fly RBI. But three hits and a Notre Dame error only added up to that single run.

In the fourth after the Verdun blast, Hannah Penna followed with a walk and Megan Coronado with a single. DePaul wound up stranding both runners.

"It was frustrating," Lenti said. "We got ourselves out by chasing bad pitches.

"Verdun didn't have it today. You've got to bring your `A' game against the better teams. She didn't bring her `A' stuff."

The Blue Demons will close out the three-game series on Senior Day Sunday when Ali Warren, Bree Brown and Samantha Dodd will be honored after the noon game.

NOTES: After racking up 30 strikeouts in the previous three games, Verdun had none on Saturday.... in five innings of work, the junior gave up five runs on six hits with three walks... Dodd was DePaul's hottest hitter, going 6-for-7 in the doubleheader with her first home run, two runs and an RBI... Verdun was 4-for-7 on the day with the home run and two RBIs... Megan Coronado went 4-for-8 while Allie Braden was 3-for-8 with two runs... in four innings of relief during the opener, Connolly gave up one earned run and four hits... in two innings of relief in game two, Maize held the Fighting Irish to a pair of hits... Notre Dame's Winter hit a home run in each game.