PISCATAWAY, N.J. (April 10, 2012) – The Rutgers softball team looks to get back on track as it returns home for a five-game homestand against a pair of BIG EAST opponents. The Scarlet Knights open the span with a midweek doubleheader on Wednesday, April 11 versus Notre Dame. Game time is set for noon at the RU Softball Complex.
RU (16-20, 5-6 BIG EAST) dropped a three-game series to No. 12 Louisville over the weekend and is in the midst of a five-game losing streak. Despite a good effort from its pitching staff, Rutgers struggled to string together hits and provide run support throughout the series, getting shutout in two of three games. In the finale on Saturday, the Scarlet Knights attempted to come from behind, as sophomore Alexis Durando (Oakland, N.J.) tallied a two-run double in the top of the fourth, bringing RU within one (3-2), but Rutgers was unable to bring the tying run across the plate, leaving six runners stranded in the contest.
Durando is leading the team, hitting at a .471 clip and a .571 on-base percentage in conference action – ranking fourth in the BIG EAST in batting average and third in on-base percentage – with a league best four doubles. On the season, senior third baseman Brittney Lindley (Cicero, N.Y.) is recording a .369 batting average, eighth in the BIG EAST, and is first in the conference in on-base percentage (.522).
In the circle, freshman Alyssa Landrith (Vacaville, Calif.) has logged 122.2 innings of work, in the midst of an 11-7 overall mark and a 2.68 ERA. Junior Abbey Houston (New Egypt, N.J.) has made 18 appearances on the year and is holding batters to a .282 batting average.
Notre Dame has won eight-straight, including a pair of nonconference midweek victories last week against Northwestern (9-1) and at Purdue (8-6). Senior first baseman Dani Miller went 3-for-3 from the plate versus the Boilermakers, with two runs scored, two runs batted in and one walk. Sophomore pitcher Laura Winter picked up her 12th win of the season, pitching 4.1 innings, allowing three earned runs on six hits. On the season, Winter has a 2.13 ERA, with 141 strikeouts.
Catcher Amy Buntin is hitting at a .376 clip from the third spot in the lineup and is tied for first with Miller for a team-best 29 RBI. Miller leads the team with eight doubles and seven home runs for 15 of her 31 hits on the year.
Notre Dame has won four-straight in the series against Rutgers, for a 28-7 advantage all-time. ND took two on its home field against RU in the latest meeting (April 1-3, 2010), defeating Rutgers 8-0 in both matchups. The Scarlet Knights’ last win versus the Fighting Irish came on April 14, 2008, a 5-4 win.
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