Homecoming: LB Bobby Wagner agrees to 5-year deal with Rams

LOS ANGELES (AP) Linebacker Bobby Wagner agreed to a five-year deal Thursday to join his hometown Los Angeles Rams.

The Super Bowl champions outmaneuvered several suitors for Wagner, one of the NFL’s top inside linebackers after his decade with the Seattle Seahawks. ESPN reported Wagner’s deal contains $50 million guaranteed and could be worth up to $65 million.

The Seahawks released the six-time All-Pro anchor of their defense on March 9. Just over three weeks later, Wagner agreed to join Seattle’s NFC West rivals, providing the force at inside linebacker that the Rams have lacked for several seasons.

Wagner was born in Los Angeles, and he graduated from high school in suburban Ontario, California.

Wagner joins receiver Allen Robinson as the most prominent offseason additions to the Rams, who have once again proven their adeptness at fitting stars under the salary cap. Los Angeles lost a handful of starters and key contributors to free agency, retirement and a trade over the past month, but also managed to retain two key offensive linemen while adding Wagner and Robinson as veteran playmakers.

Although Wagner plays a markedly different linebacking role, his arrival will assuage some of the Rams’ disappointment at losing midseason acquisition Von Miller, who took a slightly higher offer from the Buffalo Bills rather than running it back in Los Angeles.

Wisconsin’s Davis says he’s entering NBA draft, hiring agent

MADISON, Wis. (AP) Wisconsin’s Johnny Davis is ready to turn pro after delivering a superb sophomore season.

Davis announced Thursday that he’s entering the NBA draft and hiring an agent. The 6-foot-5 guard is regarded as a likely lottery selection and could be Wisconsin’s first top-10 overall pick since the Charlotte Hornets took Frank Kaminsky ninth overall in 2015.

The only other Badgers to be selected in the top 10 of an NBA draft are Don Rehfeldt (second in 1950) and Devin Harris (fifth in 2004).

Davis made his announcement on ESPN’s “NBA Today” and later posted on social media.

“It has always been a dream of mine, as long as I can remember, to play in the NBA,” Davis said in a video he posted. He added that he “cannot wait to represent Wisconsin at the highest level.”

The draft is June 23.

Davis is an Associated Press All-America first-team selection and the Big Ten player of the year. He is a finalist for the Naismith Trophy and Wooden Award, both given annually to the nation’s top player.

Kansas’ Ochai Agbaji, Iowa’s Keegan Murray and Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe join Davis as Naismith finalists. Those four along with Gonzaga’s Drew Timme join Davis as Wooden finalists.

Davis also was one of the nation’s most improved players. After averaging 7 points, 4.1 rebounds and 24.4 minutes in a bench role as a freshman, he had 19.7 points and 8.2 rebounds per game this season while helping Wisconsin (25-8) win a share of the Big Ten regular-season title and earn a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Although an ankle injury knocked Davis out of Wisconsin’s regular-season finale, he returned to play in the Big Ten Tournament and NCAAA Tournament.

South Carolina’s Aliyah Boston wins AP player of the year

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Aliyah Boston has dominated women’s college basketball on both ends of the court this season.

The junior forward helped South Carolina go wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in the country, putting up an SEC-record 27 consecutive double-doubles, and she has helped put the Gamecocks two wins away from the program’s second national championship.

Boston was honored as The Associated Press women’s basketball player of the year on Thursday. She is the second player from South Carolina to be recognized with the award, joining former Gamecocks great A’ja Wilson.

“Not often do you get the complete package. I think this recognition is for what she was able to do on both sides of the ball,” South Carolina coach Dawn Staley said. “The player of the year is usually for offensive-minded people who think that when you put the ball in the hole, you should be bestowed the player of the year. She’s the full package. Every single day.”

Boston received 23 votes from the 30-member national media panel that votes weekly for the AP Top 25. Iowa’s Caitlin Clark received six votes and Baylor’s NaLyssa Smith got one.

Boston averaged 16.8 points, 12 rebounds and 2.6 blocks this year.

“I think Aliyah is so unselfish that she’s not very comfortable taking over basketball games,” Staley said. “She doesn’t want to be seen by her teammates as selfish and chasing numbers.”

Boston’s parents surprised the unanimous first-team AP All-American with the news on Zoom that she had won the award.

“I’m in shock, I got the chills,” Boston said to her parents on the call.

Giannis becomes Bucks’ scoring leader in OT win over Nets

NEW YORK (AP) Giannis Antetokounmpo loved the fact that he became Milwaukee’s career scoring leader on a 3-pointer, so nobody can say he’s just a dunker anymore.

Otherwise, there was no reason for celebrating after passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

“When I’m done we can talk about it, but now there’s no time,” Antetokoumpo said, looking ahead to Friday’s game against the Clippers. “There’s things that have to be done.”

Antetokounmpo’s record-setting 3-pointer forced overtime, and he made two free throws in the final seconds to give the Bucks a 120-119 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday night.

The defending NBA champions clinched a return to the postseason with the win, in which Antetokounmpo had 44 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. Jrue Holiday added 19 points and Khris Middleton had 16 before being ejected for a flagrant foul midway through the third quarter.

Kevin Durant had 26 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds for the Nets, but missed a 3-pointer that would have won it. Kyrie Irving scored 25 points and Bruce Brown had 23.

Just as in the memorable end to their second-round series last summer, when the Bucks overcame 48 points from Durant – most ever in a Game 7 – overtime was needed to determine a winner. Milwaukee took that one 115-111 and pulled it out Thursday behind a second straight 40-point game from Antetokounmpo.

The Greek Freak has been dismissed, famously by James Harden, as a great athlete but not necessarily a skilled basketball player. But the NBA Finals MVP has become a confident shooter and his teammates are confident in him.

“We just fight, compete, compete and know that obviously it helps to have that big fellow on your team that can literally break a game open for you and make plays,” Bucks swingman Wesley Matthews said.

DeRozan scores 50, Bulls rally past Clippers 135-130 in OT

CHICAGO (AP) DeMar DeRozan did everything he could to carry the Chicago Bulls to a much-needed victory.

The only glitch came in the closing seconds of regulation. That’s when he missed the potential go-ahead free throw after making his first two to tie it.

In the end, it didn’t matter much.

DeRozan scored a season-high 50 points and Chicago rallied to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 135-130 in overtime Thursday night.

DeRozan finished two points shy of his career high. The five-time All-Star scored 17 in the fourth quarter and made up for his missed foul shot by scoring 10 more in overtime.

“It felt like a bomb went off inside my head,” he said. “Just frustrated with myself.”

DeRozan shrugged off the missed free throw and helped the Bulls come away with a win after falling behind by 16 in the third period.

Chicago, which led the Eastern Conference for a large portion of the season, moved a half-game ahead of sixth-place Toronto with five remaining. The Bulls are trying to stay in the top six in order to avoid the play-in round in the postseason.

Nikola Vucevic added 22 points and 14 rebounds. Zach LaVine scored 21 as the Bulls won for the third time in four games.

Reggie Jackson led Los Angeles with 34 points.

Young leads surging Hawks past struggling Cavaliers 131-107

ATLANTA (AP) Trae Young scored 30 points and the surging Atlanta Hawks never trailed while beating the short-handed Cleveland Cavaliers 131-107 on Thursday night to clinch a spot in the Eastern Conference play-in tournament.

Cedi Osman led Cleveland with 21 points. Darius Garland had 18 points and eight assists while sitting out the final quarter of the blowout loss.

Cavaliers standout rookie Evan Mobley missed his second consecutive game with a sprained ankle. Cleveland has lost two straight and five of six as it attempts to keep the No. 7 spot in the Eastern Conference.

Young had nine assists as the Hawks’ fourth consecutive win clinched no worse than the No. 10 spot in the Eastern Conference and a berth in the play-in tournament. The Hawks began the night one-half game behind Charlotte and one game behind Brooklyn.

“We’re in a tight race here at the end and we’re starting to click at the right time,” Young said, before offering the reminder the Hawks advanced to the Eastern Conference finals last year. “We did the same thing last year and we were able to make a run.”

Kevin Huerter continued his strong finish to the regular season with 23 points, his fourth consecutive game with at least 20 points. Clint Capela added 12 points with 14 rebounds.

Cavaliers coach B.J. Bickerstaff said before the game “we’re searching at this point” for a playing rotation due to injuries. Guard Rajon Rando (ankle) missed his 10th consecutive game. Center Jarrett Allen missed his 12th straight with a finger injury.

Bickerstaff said he respected the Hawks’ “firepower” and said “they have the ability to blow you out because of that.”

The Hawks delivered on Bickerstaff’s assessment.

Bey’s late scoring surge helps Pistons top 76ers 102-94

DETROIT (AP) Saddiq Bey scored 10 of his 20 points in the final 4:23 as the Detroit Pistons pulled away down the stretch and beat the Philadelphia 76ers 102-94 on Thursday night.

“It is huge for us to see that we can play at this level and play well enough to beat a team like Philly,” Bey said. “Early in the season, we were still learning how to do this, but now we know what we need to do on both ends of the floor to win games like this.”

Cade Cunningham scored 27 points for Detroit, which snapped a three-game losing streak and had a 39-8 edge in scoring off the bench.

“This is one of those nights where everyone steps up and does their job,” Cunningham said. “We’ve grown to the point where, when we all get rolling, we’re probably going to win the game.”

Joel Embiid had 37 points and 15 rebounds and James Harden finished with 18 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for the 76ers.

“I thought we played with very little life tonight,” Sixers coach Doc Rivers said. “I thought we were pretty good for about the first eight minutes of the first quarter and after that we just stood around. That’s something we’ve been doing too often lately.”

Detroit didn’t lead until the fourth quarter, and Isaiah Livers’ 3-pointer with 5:05 left gave the Pistons a 90-87 advantage. After Harden missed, Bey made it 93-87 with another 3-pointer, forcing Rivers to call a timeout.

Embiid answered with a dunk, but Bey scored seven points in a 9-0 run that gave the Pistons a 102-89 lead with 1:54 to play.

“We stopped executing in the fourth quarter,” said former Piston Tobias Harris, who finished with 14 points. “We weren’t stopping them on defense and we had too many turnovers to change the momentum. They just kept making plays.”

Utah snaps five-game skid with 122-109 win over Lakers

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Donovan Mitchell scored 29 points and Rudy Gobert had 25 points and 17 rebounds as the Utah Jazz snapped a five-game losing streak with a 122-109 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night.

“It was huge to get a win,” Mitchell said. “The negativity and the losses and all that pressure was more external, but it was not an ideal time to have a five-game losing streak. So it’s nice to celebrate this one tonight.”

Jordan Clarkson scored 19 points, Mike Conley added 18 and Bojan Bogdanovic 11 in his return from injury as the Jazz continued their fight to stay out of a Western Conference play-in game.

Utah led wire-to-wire, the fourth game of the season in which it never trailed. But, the Lakers stayed within striking distance until Gobert slammed down Mitchell’s miss to make it 120-104 with 2:54 to play.

“We were finding guys, making the right reads, getting switches, being able to break down the defense, get in the paint and make the extra pass,” Mitchell said of the Jazz offense returning to its efficient ways with 51 percent shooting and only eight turnovers.

Russell Westbrook scored 24 points and Dwight Howard had 21 points and 14 rebounds for the Lakers, who were without LeBron James (ankle sprain) and Anthony Davis (foot sprain). Howard even hit a step-back 3-pointer as he reached double figures for the second time in his last 12 games.

“I know how important these games are down the stretch. I just wanted to get my body and my mind prepared for tonight. Felt really good out there. Just a little bit hurt about not winning the game,” Howard said.

Lakers have dropped five of six and are 4-14 since beating the Jazz on Feb. 16. They played their 37th different starting lineup against Utah.

Report: Ginobili among inductees for Basketball HOF 2022 class

Former San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili will be one of multiple inductees into the Basketball Hall of Fame’s class of 2022, sources told The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Ginobili will be joined by former 13-year NBA veteran Tim Hardaway, four-time WNBA All-Star and two-time Olympic gold medalist Swin Cash, longtime West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins, and former NBA bench boss George Karl, according to Charania.

The Hall of Fame class of 2022 will be officially announced Saturday.

Ginobili is set to become a first-ballot Hall of Famer. The Argentine played 16 seasons in the NBA, all with San Antonio, winning four championships while earning two All-Star appearances and two All-NBA selections. The 44-year-old was also named the recipient of the 2008 Sixth Man of the Year award.

Internationally, he helped Argentina medal twice at the Olympic Games, winning gold in 2004 and bronze in 2008. He was also part of the squad that won silver at the 2002 FIBA World Cup.

Hardaway spent 13 seasons in the Association, making a majority of his 867 career appearances with the Golden State Warriors and Miami Heat between 1989 and 2001. Together with Hall of Famers Mitch Richmond and Chris Mullin, Hardaway was part of the Warriors’ memorable “Run TMC” trio during his first two seasons in the league.

Cash, a 15-year WNBA veteran, played for the Detroit Shock, Seattle Storm, Chicago Sky, Atlanta Dream, and New York Liberty from 2002-16. Cash won a pair of national titles in college with UConn in 2000 and 2002, winning the NCAA Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award in the latter.

Huggins has been the men’s head coach at West Virginia since the 2007-08 season. He’s tallied a 326-188 record and led the program to 10 national tournaments, highlighted by a Final Four run in 2010. Prior to his time with the Mountaineers he spent 16 seasons at Cincinnati, going 398-128 and making the NCAA Tournament for 14 straight years.

Karl is best remembered for a lengthy coaching career in the NBA that spanned nearly three decades. He represented the Cleveland Cavaliers, Warriors, Milwaukee Bucks, Denver Nuggets, and, most recently, the Sacramento Kings. However, he might be better known for his seven-season tenure with the Seattle SuperSonics. He took the franchise to The Finals in 1996, where they fell to Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls.

The 2013 Coach of the Year went a combined 1,175-824 in his career. He ranks sixth on the all-time leaderboard for wins by a head coach.

Report: Lakers’ Davis plans to return Friday vs. Pelicans

Anthony Davis expects to make his long-awaited return to the Los Angeles Lakers’ lineup for Friday’s game versus the New Orleans Pelicans, sources told The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Los Angeles has gone 4-13 since Davis suffered a mid-foot sprain on Feb 16. He’ll miss Thursday’s road contest against the Utah Jazz.

The slide has dropped LeBron James and Co. to 10th place in the Western Conference – 1.5 games behind the ninth-place Pelicans and just half a game up on the San Antonio Spurs.

Davis has averaged 23.1 points on a 58.2% true shooting percentage this season, rounding out his statistical profile with 9.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 2.3 blocks, and 1.2 steals in just over 35 minutes a night.

MLB, players keep automatic runners in extras for 2022

NEW YORK (AP) Major League Baseball finalized the rules change Thursday to bring back automatic runners in extra innings for a third straight season.

Despite an easing of pandemic restrictions, MLB and the players’ association agreed to keep the controversial rule that starts each team with a runner on second base during extra innings for the 2022 regular season.

The agreement regarding on-field rules modifications also includes expanding active rosters from 26 players to 28 from opening day on April 7 through May 1 this year, due to the delayed start of spring training.

Another new rule benefits Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani. With the designated hitter adopted in both leagues, pitchers who start games in the batting order can remain in the game as a DH after leaving the mound. A DH can also enter the game to pitch. That change will apply to multiple seasons.

“The expansion of the designated hitter and giving two-way players enhanced flexibility to showcase their talents will benefit the game for the foreseeable future,” union director of player services Kevin Slowey said in a statement. “The roster and extra-inning adjustments will also serve to protect the health and safety of players during what will be a unique 2022 season.”

The “zombie” runner modification was applied to the 2020 and 2021 regular seasons as part of adjustments due to COVID-19.

There were 78 extra-inning games during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, and the longest by innings were a pair of 13-inning contests at Houston, won by the Los Angeles Dodgers on July 29 and by Oakland on Aug. 7. Every previous season since 1901 had at least one game of 15 innings or longer

There were 233 extra-inning games last year, and the longest was the Dodgers’ 16-inning win at the San Diego Padres on Aug. 25.

Darvish gets 2nd straight opening day nod for Padres

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) Yu Darvish will make his second straight opening day start for the San Diego Padres when they open their season on the road against the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 7.

New manager Bob Melvin made the decision to go with the right-hander, who was 8-11 last season with a 4.22 ERA. His late-season fade in 2021 mirrored the rest of the Padres, who spent a lot of money during the offseason, started the season with high hopes but ended with a disappointing 79-83 record, far behind the Giants and Dodgers.

The 35-year-old Darvish hopes to return to his 2020 form, when he was 8-3 with a 2.01 ERA and finished second in the NL Cy Young Award voting. He’s had a good start to the spring, striking out 10 batters over seven innings while giving up just one earned run in the Cactus League.

The five-time All-Star also started on opening day for the Rangers in 2017.

Shane Bieber to start Guardians’ season opener in KC

GOODYEAR, Arizona (AP) Shane Bieber will throw the first pitch for the Cleveland Guardians.

As expected, Bieber will start the season opener on April 7 at the Kansas City Royals. Manager Terry Francona made the formal announcement Thursday after speaking to the right-hander, who missed three months last season with a shoulder strain.

Bieber will be the 12th pitcher in franchise history to make three consecutive opening-day starts.

The 26-year-old went 7-4 with a 3.17 ERA last season, but made only 16 starts because of the shoulder injury. He’s back to 100% now, but Francona wanted to double check Bieber was set given the accelerated, abbreviated spring training due to the lockout.

“We just wanted to make sure that he was ready and if we needed to alter it, because the way we’re coming into the season isn’t the way guys pitched,” Francona said. “It’s just because it’s a short spring and we need to give them the best chance to be as ready as they can be.”

Bieber has split his two previous opening-day starts. He struck out 14 in a win over the Royals in 2020 on his way to winning the Cy Young. Last year, he struck out 12 in a loss to the Detroit Tigers.

Francona hasn’t set his rotation for the season’s first week.

Brock Holt granted release from Braves; Lee optioned to AAA

VENICE, Fla. (AP) Ten-year veteran Brock Holt ended his bid to win a bench spot with the Atlanta Braves on Thursday when he requested and was granted his release.

Holt, 33, signed with Atlanta on a minor league deal and was invited to the major league camp. He was competing with versatile veteran Phil Gosselin and Pat Valaika for a utility position.

The Braves also optioned left-hander Dylan Lee, who made a surprise start as an opener in last season’s World Series Game 4 against Houston, a 3-2 comeback win, and outfielder Travis Demeritte to Triple-A Gwinnett. Lee, 27, made history as the first pitcher to make his first major league start in the World Series.

Holt hit .209 with two homers and 23 RBIs in 76 games with Texas in 2021. He made his major league debut with Pittsburgh in 2012 before playing seven seasons with the Boston Red Sox.

Holt played every infield and outfield position with the Red Sox but was primarily a third baseman with the Rangers. He has a .262 career batting average in 10 seasons.

Lindor’s spring power surge welcome sight for New York Mets

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) Francisco Lindor wasn’t the franchise-altering shortstop the Mets were hoping for last season.

His performance in this year’s shortened spring training has New York confident better days are coming.

The switch-hitting Lindor has been among the best hitters in the Grapefruit League through two weeks of games, hitting .476 with four homers and 10 RBIs through his first 21 at-bats. It’s the kind of run that was common when the former Cleveland star made four All-Star teams in a row from 2016-19.

The 28-year-old struggled for big chunks of his first season with the Mets after signing a 10-year, $341 million contract, batting just .230 with 20 homers.

“Life was a little faster for me last year,” Lindor said earlier in spring training. “I tried to give it my best, gave it my best and I just wasn’t as productive as I wanted to be.”

The Mets have sky-high expectations once again in 2022, believing Lindor can be a cornerstone for a lineup that includes slugger Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil and newly acquired players like Starling Marte and Mark Canha.

Here are a few other players off to a good start as MLB’s regular season rapidly approaches on April 7:

David Peralta, OF, Diamondbacks: The veteran has been a steady influence in Arizona’s lineup since 2014 but his power has dipped considerably over the past two seasons with 13 homers in a stretch spanning about 700 at-bats. He has four homers in his first 19 spring at-bats in Cactus League play.

Kyle Higashioka, C, Yankees: The sixth-year catcher has slowly worked his way into a bigger role with the Yankees. His ability to hit will probably determine if he ultimately becomes a part-time or full-time option. He showed some pop last year with 10 homers, but hit just .181 in 193 at-bats. He’s off to a good start in the Grapefruit League with a .412 average and four homers.

Brewers sign RHP José Ureña to $1.25M, 1-year contract

MILWAUKEE (AP) Former Miami Marlins and Detroit Tigers pitcher Jose Urena has signed a $1.25 million, one-year contract with the Milwaukee Brewers

The NL Central champion Brewers announced the signing Tuesday as a minor league contract and immediately selected him to the major league roster.

He can earn $1.55 million based on starts: $50,000 for five, $100,000 for 10, $200,000 for 15, $300,000 for 20, $400,000 for 25 and $500,000 for 30. Urena can earn $1.05 million for relief appearances: $50,000 for 20, $100,000 for 30, $150,000 for 40, $200,000 for 50, $250,000 for 60 and $300,000 for 70.

He would have a $250,000 salary if assigned to the minir leagues.

Urena, 30, went 4-8 with a 5.81 ERA for the Tigers last season in 26 appearances, including 18 starts. The right-hander had 67 strikeouts and 42 walks in 100 2/3 innings.

He owns a 36-54 career record with a 4.77 ERA, and 473 strikeouts and 250 walks in 697 2/3 innings. Urena pitched for the Marlins from 2015-20.

Urena’s best seasons came in 2017 and 2018. He went 14-7 with a 3.82 ERA in 2017 and was 9-12 with a 3.98 ERA in 2018.

Reds’ Greene, with 104 mph heater, makes opening rotation

GOODYEAR, Arizona (AP) Hunter Greene has cracked the Cincinnati Reds’ season-opening rotation.

The second overall pick from the 2017 draft reached 104 mph with his fastball in Triple-A last season and could be one of the most exciting rookies in baseball this year. The right-hander will pitch behind opening-day starter Tyler Mahle during a weekend series against the World Series champion Atlanta Braves.

Manager David Bell informed Greene that he’d made the team Tuesday, and Cincinnati announced it Wednesday.

“I’m still at a loss for words. I knew yesterday, but I had to keep it on the down low. I told my family,” Greene said. “A lot of work went into this. There were so many obstacles, so many ups and downs, but it is not going to be the last time I face adversity. I’ve learned a lot of life lessons. I had to grow up pretty quick for some things.”

Mahle will pitch the opener Thursday, April 7, with Reiver Sanmartin and Vladimir Gutierrez going Friday and Saturday. The 22-year-old Greene gets the ball for his big league debut in the series finale Sunday.

Greene missed the entire 2019 season due to Tommy John surgery but looked to be at full strength last year, when he was 10-8 with a 3.30 ERA and 139 strikeouts in 106 1/3 innings between Double-A Chattanooga and Triple-A Louisville.

He’s thrown three scoreless innings spanning two outings this spring, striking out three without allowing a walk.

Canó to try first base again as Mets experiment in spring

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) Robinson Cano is ready to take another swing at first base.

A second baseman throughout his career, Cano is scheduled to play first in spring training Thursday as the New York Mets experiment with options that could keep his bat in the lineup on occasion.

The 39-year-old Cano has played 2,158 games at second base during his 16-year major league career. His only experience at first was 14 games with the Seattle Mariners in 2018.

“They’re going to do some things with him tomorrow morning so it’s not cold turkey,” Mets manager Buck Showalter said Wednesday night.

Jeff McNeil is penciled in as New York’s primary second baseman this season. Pete Alonso and Dominic Smith top the depth chart at first, while Cano figures to fit often as the designated hitter – which gets adopted in the National League this year.

But the Mets are looking for defensive insurance and other ways to get at-bats for Cano, a .303 career hitter with 334 home runs and 2,624 hits.

He sat out the entire 2021 season while serving his second suspension for performance-enhancing drugs.

“He’s still going to play some second base, but he’s so excited to be back with the team and being in a position to contribute,” Showalter said.

The new Mets manager said putting guys in different positions is important this time of year.

Utility infielder Luis Guillorme played third base in Tuesday night’s 10-0 win over the Miami Marlins. Eduardo Escobar, an All-Star third baseman with Arizona last year, was at second base Wednesday night against Houston.

Royals exercise option to keep Matheny through 2023 season

(AP) — The Kansas City Royals exercised their club option on Mike Matheny for the 2023 season on Thursday, eliminating any uncertainty over whether their manager will remain with the club after the coming season.

Matheny is entering his third season with the Royals, which includes the COVID-19-shortened 2020 season and his first 162-game run as the manager last season. He is 100-122 with Kansas City and 691-596 overall, which includes seven seasons as the manager of the cross-state St. Louis Cardinals.

“Mike is one of the finest leaders I’ve been around and the Royals are fortunate to have him managing our team,” Royals President Dayton Moore said. “He is a tremendous competitor who cares deeply about players, the Kansas City community and this great game of baseball.”

The decision to retain Matheny was largely a foregone conclusion. The Royals are in the midst of a massive rebuilding effort following back-to-back American League pennants in 2014 and `15, weathering consecutive seasons of 100-plus losses in the final two years of manager Ned Yost’s tenure. And they’re just beginning to see the fruits of their labors as a talented, young bunch of starting pitchers establish themselves in the big leagues and more young help is on the way.

Brad Keller, Brady Singer and Kris Bubic are all 20-something pitchers who have taken some lumps but showed plenty of promise, and shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. – the No. 1 prospect in baseball – is elbowing his way onto the opening day roster.

Heading into Thursday, Witt was hitting .476 with two homers and six RBIs in eight spring training games.




GRADE: 6.72

Long, lean and linear, Gardner’s physical and football growth are on full display when comparing his 2019 tape to 2021. He’s highly competitive with a confidence level that will be labeled as cocky by some evaluators. “Sauce” uses length and hand activity to impose his will on the release and stall the route on the tarmac. Staying connected to the route is a priority, which leads to grabbing when he feels it slipping away but that can be corrected by improving his footwork and trusting his technique. His movements lack fluidity, but he’s urgent and aggravating in man-to-man, which could become a deterrent for NFL quarterbacks scanning to his side of the field if he can avoid a big spike in penalties as he adjusts to NFL officiating. Gardner has the traits and demeanor to become a highly effective CB1 within his first couple of seasons.


  • Tall corner with long limbs and sticky hands.
  • Desired blend of confidence and competitiveness.
  • Allowed just 6.6 yards per reception in 2021, according to PFF.
  • Presses like a boxing match with jabs and flurries.
  • Punches and posts through release phase.
  • Digs the grave and buries an outside release.
  • Accelerates from opening to stay connected to the route.
  • Improved eye balance in 2021.
  • Recognizes play development and alters assignment accordingly.
  • Creates very cluttered workspace on contested catches.
  • Attacks passing lanes from off coverage with burst and stride.
  • Has two career pick-sixes.
  • Handled business when matched up against Alabama WR Jameson Williams in national semifinal.


  • Skinny legs with below-average build.
  • Unnecessary disregard for technique.
  • Plethora of holding and interference calls over three years.
  • Grabs and holds when pattern matching goes awry.
  • Some hip tug when trying to flip and run.
  • Footwork needs to become a priority.
  • Average gather-and-go quickness from his pedal.
  • Inconsistent coming to balance in pursuit.
  • Catch-and-drag tackler.



GRADE: 6.70

Three-year starter whose average size is overshadowed by skillful ruggedness, allowing him to contest throws from a variety of coverages. He’s an elite competitor with a route-hugging mentality fueled by body control, foot agility, aggression and burst. He’s a pesky press-man defender with the tools to excel in zone. He’s willing to fly downhill and hit anybody near the football. He keeps his eyes on the prize and has an itchy, twitchy trigger to close throwing windows and make plays on the ball. He lacks lockdown traits but has lockdown talent and his competitive energy is contagious. He can play outside or from the slot and carries a very high floor with the potential to become one of the league’s top corners at some point during his first contract.


  • Fearless, aggressive competitor.
  • Tools to live in tight press man from start to finish.
  • Patience and well-balanced to mirror and match a clever release.
  • Swivels and stays connected to cross-face routes.
  • Recognition of route combinations in Cover 3.
  • Allowed 16 catches on 296 total passing snaps in 2021, per PFF.
  • Body control and foot quickness allow for elite phase potential.
  • Has the juice to bait throws and pounce on them.
  • Natural feel for angles to the football.
  • Twitched up with explosive burst to close.
  • Precocious attacking the catch space.
  • Tenacious in run support.
  • Wipes out run after catch with decisive blows.
  • Consistent coming to balance as open-field tackler.


  • Below-average size and length for CB1.
  • Could struggle to defend throws from trail.
  • Has potential to improve anticipation.
  • Waits for release to begin before squeezing tight.
  • Could have issues banging on big wideouts.
  • Saw limited NFL-level challenges over last two seasons.



GRADE: 6.50

Uniquely gifted cornerback with rare blend of size, speed and explosiveness that will have teams willing to judge his upside off of tape from two seasons ago. Stingley played in just 10 games over the last two years, offering flashes of his upside rather than sustained play. Regardless of season, he’s long, loose and extremely athletic. Elite speed and ball skills give him a chance to thrive as a bump-and-run corner capable of shadowing top talent around the field. He allows some separation from off-man but bursts to close distance instantly. He’s well-suited for a variety of zone coverages but needs to play with much better zeal and toughness in run support. Stingley will likely measure and test like Marshon Lattimore, Patrick Peterson and Antonio Cromartie (depending on his weight), but he needs to find that breakthrough 2019 form in order to reach his potential as a lockdown cover talent.


  • Cornerback prototype with all the measurables in one package.
  • One of the best athletes in the draft class.
  • His 2019 tape shows a player with everything a team could want in a CB.
  • Backpedal is low and smooth.
  • Long arms and oily hips for press.
  • Anticipates out-breaking routes and looks to undercut.
  • Has the swivel-and-sprint to carry vertical targets the distance.
  • Burst to recover and close distance when beaten.
  • Congests and walls off downfield catch space.
  • Springy leaper with sudden hands to dominate 50/50 balls.
  • Instant plant-and-drive trigger from the top of the drop.
  • Has size to become a more efficient tackler.


  • Has played in just 10 games over the past two seasons.
  • Tape was more good than great in 2020 and 2021.
  • Coverage was lackadaisical against Auburn in 2020.
  • Inconsistent finding the football over the last two seasons.
  • Needs to trust his technique in tight man.
  • Missing hardcore competitiveness on every snap.
  • Disappointing run support and tackling at times.



GRADE: 6.40

A press/zone combo corner with good size and length, Booth plays with an urgent, competitive nature. He has the strength, balance and foot agility to press and slow the release. He has limited starting experience, though. He will need more development to prevent route specialists from manipulating his feet and hips. Booth has the ball-tracking and play strength to find and maintain top-dog positioning through catch tries. He’s more effective in off coverage underneath than tight man. He needs to play more football, but his ball-hawking instincts, burst to close and toughness in run support will be very appealing for zone teams looking for an upgrade at cornerback.


  • Five-star background with five-star measurables.
  • Feet are very agile and twitchy.
  • Slides and slows release from press.
  • Strength to maintain extended jab through release.
  • Backpedal is smooth and fast.
  • Consistently competitive and urgent in his coverage.
  • Better playmaking talent than ball production would indicate.
  • Awareness to read and overlap from zone.
  • Burst and length helps him close out a catch point.
  • Ball judgment and tracking is top-notch.
  • Maintains positioning and contorts to challenge throws.
  • A downhill striker.


  • Split high with slight stall in his hips when matching lateral break points.
  • Will need to dial back physical hands beyond the line of scrimmage.
  • False steps and inefficiencies in coverage movements.
  • Gets prematurely turned by a quality route-runner.
  • Unable to generate instant acceleration from transitions.
  • Can be too anticipatory and overreactive.
  • Needs better eye balance from zone and off-man coverage.

  • Tackling lacks control at times.



GRADE: 6.38

Elam is the next up in a long line of talented Florida cornerbacks, but he failed to play his best football in his final collegiate season. He is patient and strong to mirror and impede releases but inconsistent staying connected to the early stages of the route. He plays with good awareness in zone and has the twitch and length to make plays on the throw when squatting in space. He was beat on deep patterns against Alabama, Arkansas and Georgia, which might have led to excessive grabbing and an overall lack of trust in his technique on the 2021 tape. He plays big at the catch point but smaller in run support. Elam has early CB3 and eventual CB2 value as a press and zone corner.


  • Desired size, length and strength for press man.
  • Well-balanced with ability to crowd and stuff the release.
  • Patient feet rarely fall for release fakes.
  • Able to swivel hips and pursue with fluidity.
  • Mirrors shifting routes with basketball agility.
  • Rarely bites on the cheese against double moves.
  • Allows receiver to close the cushion for him in Cover 3 and quarters coverage.
  • Squeezes deep sideline routes with physicality.
  • Contested catches are typically tilted in his favor.
  • Solid transition quickness to plant and drive on the throw.
  • Some improvement in his tackling on 2021 tape.


  • Loses his leverage unnecessarily.
  • Allows a little too much clearance early in the route.
  • Needs better open-and-sprint timing when squatting underneath.
  • Vertical specialists can overtake and stack him.
  • Inconsistent digesting route combinations.
  • Too much panic and grab in his 2021 tape.
  • Can improve his eye balance between the man and the ball.
  • Doesn’t play to his size in run support duties.
  • Inconsistent coming to balance as open-field tackler.

Matthews scores NHL-leading 50th, Toronto beats Winnipeg 7-3

TORONTO (AP) Auston Matthews scored his NHL-leading 50th goal of the season and the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Winnipeg Jets 7-3 on Thursday night.

Matthews scored Toronto’s sixth goal of the game into an empty net with 2:06 left in regulation. He moved past Leon Draisaitl (49 goals) of idle Edmonton for the league goal lead and became the first Maple Leafs player to reach the milestone since Dave Andreychuk scored 53 in 1993-94.

“I don’t know if I ever really envisioned it being an empty-netter goal, but I’ll take it,” Matthews said. “I had some good chances tonight, just didn’t go in.

“Fortunately that last one did.”

William Nylander had two power-play goals and an assist and Ilya Mikheyev scored short-handed and had a three-point game. Mark Giordano added a goal and an assist and John Tavares and Timothy Liljegren also scored Toronto, which got 20 saves from Erik Kallgren. Mitch Marner added three assists.

Nikolaj Ehlers had a goal and an assist, Blake Wheeler and Paul Stastny also scored for Winnipeg. Eric Comrie stopped 31 shots.

“We need to win games,” Ehlers said after Winnipeg blew an early 2-0 lead. “Besides playoffs, this is the toughest time of the year.”

Matthews joined Andreychuk, Rick Vaive (three times) and Gary Leeman as the only Maple Leafs players to reach the half-century goal mark.

“Really special to be able to do it here in front of all the fans,” said Matthews, whose team hits the road for four straight starting Saturday in Philadelphia. “The energy, the atmosphere and all that goes into it just makes it much more fun.”

Panthers beat Blackhawks 4-0, set club record for home wins

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 37 shots for his third shutout of the season, leading the Florida Panthers to a 4-0 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night.

Aleksander Barkov scored twice, Gustav Forsling had a goal and an assist, and Ryan Lomberg scored his fourth goal in three games as the Panthers won their 28th home game, a club record for a season.

“It was a good game,” Bobrovsky said. “It was a lot of shots, I thought we played a great team game in all zones. Everything was solid for a 60-minute game.”

Jonathan Huberdeau recorded his 71st assist, an NHL record for assists by a left winger. Huberdeau has 94 points, tied with Pavel Bure. He is closing in on the club record of 96 set by Barkov in the 2018-19 season.

“Cool moment. Couldn’t do it without my team,” Huberdeau said. “I’ve been aware of it on social media, but I didn’t try to think about it. You keep going, keep piling assists.”

The Panthers could clinch a playoff spot as early as Saturday.

“It’s been a great season, so far, but there’s still a lot of hockey left,” interim coach Andrew Brunette said. “We’re not content with just breaking these little records. We have an eye on a bigger prize and we still have a way to get there.”

Collin Delia stopped 40 shots for the Blackhawks, who lost their third straight game.

Osaka rallies, tops Bencic to make Miami Open women’s final

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) Naomi Osaka’s eyes welled with tears when her match ended, an all-too-familiar scene for her in recent years.

These were of the happy variety.

For the former world No. 1, that’s major progress.

The unseeded Osaka defeated No. 22 Belinda Bencic 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Thursday in the Miami Open semifinals. She’s in a championship match for the first time since the 2021 Australian Open, and will meet either No. 16 Jessica Pegula or No. 2 Iga Swiatek on Saturday.

“Damn, I’m almost crying,” Osaka said.

Maybe not even almost. She hid her face in an orange towel a few times right after the match ended, at least one tear clearly making its way down her right cheek. Osaka entered this tournament ranked No. 77 in the world, will leave Miami no worse than 36th and would be back in the top 30 if she wins the title.

It has been a long, trying and often emotional ride for Osaka since her win in the 2018 U.S. Open final over Serena Williams. She was rattled during a loss at Indian Wells on March 12 following a derogatory shout from a spectator, withdrew from last year’s French Open to address her mental state and left last year’s U.S. Open in tears.

But in South Florida, one of the places she considers home, it’s been all support from the fans.

“From the bottom of my heart, thank you,” Osaka told them in her on-court interview.

Pegula and Swiatek – who will replace the now-retired Ashleigh Barty as the No. 1-ranked women’s player in the world next week – were meeting in the other women’s semifinal on Thursday night.

Meanwhile, Daniil Medvedev came into the tournament as the No. 2-ranked men’s player in the world. Hubert Hurkacz ensured he will stay there.

Hurkacz – the No. 8 seed and defending Miami champion – wore down the top-seeded and cramp-riddled Medvedev 7-6 (7), 6-3 on Thursday in a men’s quarterfinal.


Purdue’s Jaden Ivey announces he’s entering NBA draft

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) Purdue’s Jaden Ivey has entered his name in the NBA draft, forfeiting his final two seasons of college eligibility.

“This has been a lifelong dream of mine and I am beyond excited for this journey,” Ivey posted on his social media accounts Thursday.

Ivey averaged 17.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game and was named to The Associated Press All-America second team. He joined Duke’s Paolo Banchero as the only players this season with 600 points, 175 rebounds, 100 assists, 30 steals and 20 blocked shots. Ivey is the fourth Big Ten player in 30 years to achieve those marks.

The 6-foot-4 guard from South Bend, Indiana, is projected to be selected early in the first round of the June 23 draft.

Ivey played his best against ranked opponents, averaging 19.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.4 assists in nine games. He scored in double figures in 33 of his 36 games and had a team-best 14 games of at least 20 points.

Ivey had a combined 40 points and shot 5 for 10 on 3-pointers in the Boilermakers’ first two NCAA Tournament games. He struggled in the regional semifinal loss to Saint Peter’s, with nine points and six turnovers.

Ivey is the third Purdue player in recent years to declare for the draft as an underclassman. Caleb Swanigan did it in 2017 and Carsen Edwards in 2019.

Notre Dame freshman Blake Wesley enters name for NBA draft

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) Notre Dame freshman guard Blake Wesley announced he’s entering the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-5 guard, who averaged a team-leading 14.4 points for his hometown Fighting Irish, tweeted his intention on Wednesday. Wesley later told ESPN that he was one-and-done at Notre Dame after helping the Irish to their first NCAA Tournament appearance in five years.

“I plan on staying in the draft,” Wesley told ESPN. “I’m in a great position. I’m ready for the NBA. I’m ready to start my next journey.”

After thanking his family, his teammates, the school and coach Mike Brey in his tweet, Wesley wrote, “It has always been a dream and goal for me to play at the next level.”

Wesley was an Indiana All-Star at Riley High School and Notre Dame’s first South Bend public school basketball prospect since 1985. He earned his first start for the Irish and hit the game-winning shot in a 66-62 victory over then-No. 10 Kentucky on Dec. 11 at the Purcell Pavilion. He shot 40.4% from the field and averaged 3.7 rebounds, with 84 assists and 44 steals. He earned All-ACC second-team honors.

Wesley was the only freshman in a starting lineup dominated by seniors and grad students at Notre Dame, which finished with a 24-11 record. That included going 15-5, along with North Carolina, as runners-up to Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season champion Duke.

Players with college eligibility remaining are allowed to gather information from individual and group workouts but must decide by June 1 whether to return to school or stay in the draft.

Some NBA scouts believe Wesley could be a mid-to-late first-round pick. The draft will be held June 23 at the Barclays Center in New York.

Holmes and Berger Named WBCA All-American Honorable Mention

ATLANTA – Indiana duo junior forward Mackenzie Holmes and senior guard Grace Berger were named 2022 Women’s Basketball Coaches Association All-American honorable mention on Thursday.

Holmes earns her first honorable mention award from the organization while Berger lands on the list for the second-straight season.

Berger led the team in scoring in 2021-22 with 16.2 points per game. She added 6.2 rebounds, a team-high 4.7 assists, 1.4 steals this season. The Louisville, Ky. native shot 45.0 percent from the floor and 78.8 percent at the charity stripe. She has recorded 30 games in double figures this season and tied a team-high three double-doubles. She repeated as an All-Big Ten first team selection in 2021-22 and earned spots on a plethora of watch lists including a 2022 Associated Press All-American honorable mention, 2022 Wooden Award preseason top 50, 2022 Wade Watch list, 2022 Cheryl Miller Award top 10 watchlist and a top 30 candidate for the Senior CLASS Award.

Holmes averages 15.2 points, a team-high 7.0 rebounds and shot 60.0 percent from the floor in 25 games for IU this season. The Gorham, Maine native is tied for a team-high three double-doubles and led her squad with 40 blocks (1.7 per game). Holmes set a new career-high 30 points in the win at Ohio State and has scored in double figures 22 times. In addition, the junior forward has shot 40 percent from the 3-point line and 80.8 percent at the free throw line. She earned All-Big Ten second team honors, 2022 Lisa Leslie Award top 10 watch list, 2022 Naismith Trophy midseason Team Top, 2022 Wooden Award midseason Top 25 watch list and Late Season Top 20 and 2022 Wade Trophy midseason watch list.

Baseball Gameday: host Northwestern

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Big Ten play has arrived, and the Indiana baseball program will open on its home turf against Northwestern in a three-game series on Bart Kaufman Field starting on Friday (April 1).

Indiana (10-13, 0-0 B1G) is coming off of a series win over Evansville last weekend, while Northwestern (9-11, 0-0 B1G) has won seven of its last eight games entering the weekend. The Hoosiers feature one of the most potent offenses in the Big Ten with the second most home runs and fourth most runs scored, and the Wildcats pitching has allowed the fifth fewest run and walk the fewest batter in the conference.

Gameday Info

Friday, April 1 (5 p.m.)

Probable Starters

IU: Jack Perkins, RHP, R-Jr.

NU: Sean Sullivan, LHP, Fr.

Saturday, April 2 (2 p.m.)

Probable Starters

IU: Bradley Brehmer, RHP, Sr.

NU: Michael Farinelli, RHP, Gr.

Sunday, April 3 (1 p.m.)

Probable Starters



TV: Big Ten Network

Quick Hitters

A handful of Hoosiers find themselves among the national leaders and are leading the Big Ten in various categories entering the seventh weekend of the season.

Redshirt-junior Matt Ellis has been seeing the ball well and leads the Big Ten lead in home runs. The left-handed hitter has also hit some mammoth home runs so far in 2022.

Redshirt-junior Jack Perkins is off to a solid start to the 2022 season on the mound in his first season in the cream and crimson.

Head coach Jeff Mercer owns 82 victories as the Indiana frontman and is poised to become the eighth IU skipper to reach 100 victories in the cream and crimson.

Freshman Brock Tibbitts took a pair of pitches out of the park in the IU’s season opener versus Miami (Ohio), but you don’t have to look far in the record books for the last rookie to hit multiple home runs in a game.

Graduate student Tyler Doanes has been a table setter for IU and ranks among the national leaders in walks through seven weeks of the season.

Indiana matched a school standard with four student-athletes selected in the first 10 rounds of the Major League Baseball Draft in 2021.

Scouting the Opponent

Northwestern enters with a 9-11 record overall and had won seven straight games before a series-ending loss to Butler last weekend.

Four the Wildcats’ everyday hitters own a batting average of .300 or better, led by Jay Beshears’ .379 average and Andrew Pinkston’s .351 clip.

Anthony Calarco owns a team-best 24 RBIs and six home runs. Ethan O’Donnell has 17 RBIs and a team-best 18 extra base hits.

Freshman left-handed pitcher Sean Sullivan is 4-0 on the season with a 2.61 ERA over 31 innings of work in six starts. He has allowed nine runs, walked eight and struck out 43.

As a staff, the Wildcats have walked just 79 batters in 160 innings of work to go along with 151 strikeouts and a .288 batting average.

Series Notes

Indiana and Northwestern have met 191 times in baseball entering the Big Ten opening series at Bart Kaufman Field.

Indiana owns 114-74-3 edge in the all-time series and has won 25 of the last 30 meetings in the series.

The Hoosiers own the three longest unbeaten streaks in the series, including a series-best 11-game streak from 2013-21. IU also has a 10-game unbeaten streak (9-0-1; 1928-44) and a 10-game winning streak (1995-2000).

Northwestern’s longest streak of success came in the form of an eight-game winning streak from 1950-58.

Three of Indiana’s highest-scoring Big Ten games have come against Northwestern. Of the 15 conference games with 19-plus runs scored, IU has games of 22, 20 and 19 versus the Wildcats.

In the series, 71 of the games have been decided by one run (or tied). IU is 41-27-3 in those contests, including a 5-4 win in the series opener in 2021.

Softball Heads East for 3 Game Series at Penn State


Friday, April 1

at Penn State | 6 p.m. ET | B1G+

Saturday, April 2

at Penn State | 3 p.m. ET | B1G+

Sunday, April 3

at Penn State | 1 p.m. ET | B1G+

UNIVERISTY PARK, Pa. – The Purdue softball team (18-16, 1-1 Big Ten) is set for a three game series at Penn State (19-13, 1-2 Big Ten) from Friday to Sunday.


Purdue spent the first 36 games on the road, visiting four states over the first six weeks of play for the most games played heading into conference play.

Purdue is 10-3 over the last three weeks of play, the best winning streak since the 2019 season.

Purdue faced three ranked opponents for a total of six games, owning a 1-5 record.

The Boilermakers picked up their first win over a ranked opponent since 2016 and their third since 2009. with the 1-0 shutout at #22 USF last Thursday, March 17. The win also marked the first top-25 victory for head coach Boo De Oliveira.


With Purdue’s last trip to State College coming in 2014, the series is set to be the first game at Penn State for both head coach Boo De Oliveira and the Boilermaker roster.

In the last 10 years, Purdue has the edge with a 11-2 record against Penn State.

Shortstop Rachel Becker leads the Boilermaker offense in batting avg. (.400), runs (30), hits (40), slugging % (.650) and on-base % (.504).

As a team, Purdue has generated more total bases (375-362), more walks (96-85) and a better slugging % (.426-.411), while remaining even in at-bats (880-880). However, opponents have the edge in runs scored by (138-151).


Penn State is on a 9-2 record over its last 11 games, with its two losses coming to Maryland in the Big Ten season-opening weekend.

Bailey Parshall, Penn State’s star pitcher owns a 1.35 ERA over 114.1 innings of work. This season, the lefty pitched a perfect game vs. FIU (2/18) and a 10-inning game with no relief at Maryland (3/25).

Cassie Lindmark (.398 batting avg.) and Ally Kurland (18 runs, 10 homers and a .731 slugging %) lead the Penn State offense.

First Big Ten Road Trip Brings Baseball Back to C-U


No. 16 Purdue (18-2, 1-0 B1G) at Illinois (10-12, 2-1 B1G)

Friday to Sunday, April 1 to 3 / Watch B1G+

Series Opener: Friday, April 1 at 7 p.m. ET

Middle Game: Saturday, April 2 at 4 p.m. ET

Series Finale: Sunday, April 3 at 2 p.m. ET

Illinois Field / Champaign, Illinois


Friday: Jackson Smeltz (R-Jr, LHP) vs. ILL’s Cole Kirschsieper (R-So, LHP)

Saturday: TBA for Purdue vs. ILL’s Riley Gowens (R-So, RHP)

Sunday: TBA for Purdue vs. ILL’s Jack Crowder (So, RHP)


All-Time: Illinois leads 165-87-1

All-Time in Champaign: Illinois leads 95-41

2021: Illinois won 3 of 5 – road team won all 5 games (2 in Champaign, 3 in West Lafayette)

Purdue’s Last 3-Game Series Win vs. Illinois: Purdue swept a 3-game set (April 2017 in West Lafayette)

Last Time Purdue Won a 3-Game Series in Champaign: Purdue won 2 of 3 (May 2010)

First Meeting: Illinois 14, Purdue 5 (May 1893 in West Lafayette)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — No. 16 Purdue baseball’s first of four Big Ten road trips is the shortest of the quartet as the Boilermakers visit Champaign-Urbana for the third time in four seasons for a weekend series at Illinois.

First pitch at Illinois Field is slated for 7 p.m. ET on Friday, 4 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. The Boilermakers will bat first as the visiting more times this weekend (thrice) than they did over the first 20 games of the season (once).

As April arrives, Purdue is scheduled to play on 20 of the month’s 30 days leading up to final exams week (May 2-6) on campus. April 17-18 and 27-28 are currently the team’s only consecutive off days on the schedule in April. The Boilermakers had five of their 18 schedule games in March canceled due to inclement weather and the March 22 midweek date vs. Northern Illinois was postponed until April 5.

Purdue played five consecutive games against the Fighting Illini last season and the road team won all five matchups. That went against the recent history of the series that had seen the home team win 14 of the last 15 meetings. The Boilermakers’ two victories in Champaign punctuated a 4-0 road trip as they became the first team (and one of only two overall) to sweep one of the Big Ten’s three-team pods, also beating Michigan State twice that weekend. Entering the pod, Purdue had gone just 1-11 in Champaign since 2013. Illinois returned the favor the following weekend with a three-game sweep at Alexander Field in just its second visit to the ballpark, which also opened in 2013.

The Boilermakers won games by the score of 2-1 (in 11 innings) and 20-6 in Champaign last year. Evan Albrecht provided the heroics in the 11-inning walk-off vs. Michigan State and Purdue scored 20 in a Big Ten game for the first time since 2006. The Boilermakers had three different players (six total overall) hit home runs in two different games against the Illini. But a 1-0 no-hitter in the season series rubber game capped a three-game weekend series in which there were a combined 28 runs scored at Alexander.


• Purdue at Illinois

• Minnesota at Rutgers

• Penn State at Maryland

• Nebraska at Ohio State

• Northwestern at Indiana

• Iowa at Michigan

• Michigan State at Evansville (Non-Conference)

Butler Softball to Host BIG EAST Leader UConn

Series Information – UConn

DATE:                         Friday, April 1 – Sunday, April 3

LOCATION:                Indianapolis, Ind. / Softball Field

LIVE STATS:             Gm1 / Gm2 / Gm3

LIVE VIDEO:             Gm1 / Gm3

Full Notes (PDF)

The Butler softball team is set to host a three-game series featuring the top two teams in the BIG EAST standings when UConn (18-12, 8-1 BIG EAST) comes to town this weekend. Games are scheduled for Friday at 3 pm, Saturday at 1 pm, and Sunday at 11 am.

The Bulldogs are currently 18-10 overall and 6-2 in conference play. Most recently, Butler lost a midweek contest with Dayton, 6-0.

Bulldog Bits                                                       

           (as of 3-27-22)

Karli Ricketts leads the BIG EAST (63rd nationally) in hits allowed/7 innings (4.66) and ERA (2.28). She comes in at number two (81st) in strikeout-to-walk ratio (4.28) and number four in walks allowed/7 innings (1.71). Ricketts ranks fifth in the conference with 77 strikeouts.

Lauren Fey ranks first in the BIG EAST (26th nationally) as toughest to strikeout, averaging 27.0 at bats per strikeout. She is third in on base percentage (.474) and is fourth in stolen bases/game (.41).

Bri Avery leads the BIG EAST (82nd nationally) in batting average (.412) and comes in at number three in stolen bases (12) as well as stolen bases/game (.44).

Monique Hoosen leads the BIG EAST in home runs (7) and is third in slugging percentage (0.719). She is also third (91st nationally) with two sacrifice flies.

Ellie Boyer leads the BIG EAST and is 70th nationally with 0.19 sacrifice bunts per game.

Ella White’s two triples put her third in the BIG EAST with 0.07/game, and she is also third (91st nationally) with two sacrifice flies. Her eight doubles put her in fifth with 0.30/game.

Alyssa Graves ranks second in the BIG EAST with 5.55 hits allowed/inning. She ranks third (72nd nationally) with 8.8 strikeouts per seven innings and third (91st) with 81 strikeouts.

With 44 stolen bases in her career, Lauren Fey has moved into the sixth position on Butler’s all-time list, and with 32, Bri Avery has moved into the eighth position.

Last Sunday’s win brought Coach Scott Hall (in his 12th season) to an overall record of 264-286-1, making him the all-time winningest coach in the history of the Butler softball program. Hall surpasses Barb Greenburg, who coached from 1981 through 1994. She was the program’s first coach and attained a career record of 263-226-4.

Butler has started conference play in 2022 by winning each of its first three series (Villanova, 2-0, DePaul, 2-1, Seton Hall, 2-1). Since joining the BIG EAST in 2014, the Bulldogs’ previous best start was 2016 when the team won its first two series and split the third.


Series Record: Connecticut leads, 5-0

Last Meeting: May 14, 2021 – Storrs, Conn. (BE Tournament) – UConn 4, Butler 1

UConn swept the three-game regular season series in 2021, winning 6-1, 4-2, and 1-0 (5 innings).

UConn’s previous series: The Huskies swept DePaul, winning 7-6, 7-3, and 10-2. (UConn most recently lost a midweek game, 5-2, to Boston University.)

UConn is 18-12 with wins over Missouri and Penn State (2) and losses to Northwestern, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Oregon, and North Carolina.

For the season, the Huskies lead their opponents in hits (225-207), runs (149-122), and RBIs (133-109).

Batting leaders for UConn include Brianna Marcelino (.364), Lexi Hastings (.363) and Sami Barnett (.314).

Pitching standouts for the Huskies are Elise Sokolsky (9-3, 71.2 IP, 3.32 ERA, 62 K), Meghan O’Neil (7-5, 69.1 IP, 3.74 ERA, 61 K), and Marybeth Olson (2-3, 30.0 IP, 4.20 ERA, 32 K).

April Opens with Butler Baseball Hosting Eastern Illinois

INDIANAPOLIS – Butler will host Eastern Illinois this weekend at Bulldog Park for a four-game series. FloSports will carry the action all weekend between the Bulldogs and Panthers. This series features a doubleheader on Saturday with single games slated for Friday and Sunday.

Weekend Schedule

Friday, April 1 – 4 PM

Saturday, April 2 – 12 PM (Doubleheader)

Sunday, April 3 – 1 PM

All games to be played at Bulldog Park

Projected Starters

LHP Cory Bosecker vs. LHP Trevor Nicholson

RHP Aaron Barokas vs. RHP Cameron Doherty

LHP Nick Eaton vs. TBA

TBA vs. RHP Blake Malatestinic

Scouting Eastern Illinois

The Panthers midweek matchup at Illinois State set for Wednesday afternoon was canceled due to rain. The team will now shift their focus to the Bulldogs for a four-game weekend series. EIU is currently 16-4 overall with all 20 games being played on the road. Their home opener is set for next week vs. Bellarmine, a team Butler just defeated on March 29.

EIU opened OVC action last weekend and swept UT Martin (4-3, 9-4, and 3-2). They also came up with a signature non-conference win over Illinois on March 8 (4-2). Ryan Ignoffo and Lucas Diluca are two of the top players in the Panther batting order. Ignoffo leads the team and the OVC with a .438 batting average. He has recorded 39 hits in 20 games, including a team-high seven home runs helping post a team-best 30 RBI. Diluca is a .384 hitter with 20 runs scored and a team-best 13 walks.

Weekend arms for the Panthers will likely be Cameron Doherty, Blake Malatestinic and Trevor Nicholson with closer Zane Robbins on call in the bullpen. Doherty is 3-2 this season with a 4.18 ERA. He leads the team in innings pitched (32.1) and has 34 strikeouts to just eight walks. Malatestinic (3-0) and Nicholson (4-0) are still undefeated on the mound in 2022. Malatestinic has 24 strikeouts over 28.1 innings of work. The team’s strikeout leader is Nicholson. The left-handed senior has a 1.19 ERA over four starts and is sending batters back to the dugout on a regular basis. He has 52 strikeouts in 30.1 innings with opponents’ batting just .165 against him. Robbins highlights the bullpen with seven saves in 10 appearances. He has only allowed five hits this year and has struck out 19 batters in 10.2 innings. As a unit, the Panthers lead the OVC in strikeout-to-walk ratio, strikeouts per nine innings and in team ERA (3.75).

Last Meeting

Butler and Eastern Illinois played at Bulldog Park in 2019 with the Panthers recording a 2-0 victory. Sac flies came in the third and fourth to separate the teams. Butler’s last win over EIU came in Charleston during the 2018 campaign. BU scored two in the sixth and four more in the seventh to post a 6-3 win.

Bulldog Park

Butler is 5-2 when playing at home this season. Head Coach Dave Schrage has six student-athletes batting over .300 when the Bulldogs play on campus. Aaron Steinhart leads that group with a .360 BA. Travis Holt has the most hits with 11 and James Gargano has the most RBI’s at home with five.

Three in a Row

The Bulldogs have won their last two games and will be looking for their third, three-game winning streak this weekend when they host Eastern Illinois on Friday at 4 PM. BU won three-straight at the end of February with victories against Jackson State (2x) and Prairie View A&M. They also swept a home weekend series against Western Illinois in mid-march.

Hitting Streak

Aaron Steinhart has the longest active hitting streak on the team (5). Steinhart hit four home runs over the span of four games from March 22 to March 27. He extended his streak with a two-RBI single for BU at Bellarmine on Tuesday.

Wurch Will Reach

BU infielder Billy Wurch has reached base safely in 14-straight games. Wurch was great his last time out going 2-for-2 at Bellarmine with two doubles and two runs scored.


Travis Holt, Aaron Steinhart, and Ryan O’Halloran have started in all 24 games for Butler. Holt has led-off for the Bulldogs in every game while starting at shortstop. Steinhart is primarily in the lineup as the Bulldog designated hitter and O’Halloran has 23 of his 24 starts at third base.

Be Patient

The Bulldogs didn’t swing at balls out of the zone at Bellarmine on Tuesday. As a result, the ‘Dawgs walked eight times against the Knights to tie their season-high total. BU also had eight base on balls on March 1 at Northern Kentucky.

Double Up

The Bulldogs have hit 10 doubles over their last three games. Ryan O’Halloran and Billy Wurch have three each. Holt, Gargano, Milano and McCargar have the rest.

Team Leaders

Hits: Travis Holt – 35

Runs: Travis Holt – 22

RBI: Aaron Steinhart – 24

Stolen Bases: Travis Holt – 13

ERA: Cole McDaniel – 3.70 (Starter) / Derek Drees – 0.68 (Bullpen)

IP: Cory Bosecker – 28.0

Strikeouts: Cory Bosecker – 29

Saves: Derek Drees – 3

Up Next

Butler will play at #16 Notre Dame on Tuesday, April 5.

Cardinals Hit the Road for Four MAC Games at Toledo

MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State baseball team returns to action for a four-game series at Toledo, the first Mid-American Conference road games of the season. The series is scheduled to begin with a single game on Friday, followed by a doubleheader on Saturday and a single game Sunday.

In the last MAC series, Ball State swept a doubleheader against Western Michigan after weather forced the series to Muncie on Monday. The Cardinals outscored the Broncos 14-5 in the two games.

Strikeout Schweitzer

Tyler Schweitzer tossed a gem in a 2-0 victory for BSU. He picked up his fourth win of the season behind a career-high 11 strikeouts in just 5.2 innings of work on his way to being named MAC Co-Pitcher of the Week. He surrendered just three hits and did not give up any runs. Schweitzer currently leads the MAC with 12.53 strikeouts per nine innings. For the season, Schweitzer has a team-high 45 strikeouts in 32 1/3 innings of work. He leads the team with a 4-2 record and boasts an ERA of 2.78.

The Wright Stuff

Amir Wright has reached base safely in all 22 games this season. He has 13 walks, has scored 22 runs, and hit three triples, all lead the team. He has added five doubles, four stolen bases, and one home run. Wright is currently 10th in the nation as the toughest to strikeout and leads the MAC with a strikeout average of 20.0. He has struck out just four times in 80 at bats.

Power Bats

The Cardinal offense features 12 guys that have combined for 26 home runs. BSU is tied for 74th in the NCAA in home runs and are second in the MAC. The team has produced 129 RBIs and has produced 139 runs. The Ball State bats are coming off a weekend where the Cardinals scored 14 runs in just 16 innings. 

Above Average Hitters

Matthew Rivera leads the team with a .359 batting average. He has driven in 17 runs, notched three home runs, three doubles, and scored seven runs. Rivera has a slugging percentage of .667, which leads the team. Wright is second on the team with a .350 average. Nick Powell has bolstered a .333 average and is second on the team with 20 RBIs. Powell has scored 17 runs, is tied for the team lead in doubles with six and has hit two home runs. Trenton Quartermaine rounds out the .300 average hitters with a .303 average. He leads the team with seven home runs and RBIs with 24. He is tied for the team lead with six doubles.

Strikeout Staff

The Ball State pitching staff is tied for eighth in the NCAA and leads the MAC in strikeouts per nine innings with 11.5.

Solid Staff

Trennor O’Donnell is projected to get the start in game one of the Toledo series and enters the weekend with a 2-2 record. He has produced 23 strikeouts and a 6.56 ERA in 23 1/3 innings. Schweitzer is expected to get the ball in game two of the series. Ty Johnson is the scheduled starter in game three and he enters with a 3-1 record. Johnson has tallied 30 strikeouts in 28 1/3 innings of work and an ERA of 6.67. Ty Weatherly, Nate Dohm, and Sam Klein have 20 or more strikeouts with 22, 22, and 20, respectively. The pitching staff is tied for 23rd in the NCAA with 7.58 hits allowed per nine innings, which leads the MAC.

Kloser Klein   

Klein solidified his role as a closer as he has six saves, which is tied for 12th in the NCAA and leads the MAC. He has struck out 20 batters in 12 innings on the mound. Opponents are hitting just .150 against him.

Possible Starting Matchups (subject to change)

Friday: Trennor O’Donnell (RHP) vs. Kyle Jones (RHP)

Saturday: Tyler Schweitzer (LHP) vs. Connor Brandon (RHP)

Saturday: Ty Johnson (RHP) vs. Jordan Power (RHP)

Sunday: TBA vs. TBA

Weekend Schedule

Friday: 3 p.m.

Saturday: Noon

Saturday: 3:30 p.m.

Sunday: 1 p.m.

*Times and locations are subject to change

Cardinals vs. Rockets: The Series

The Cardinals lead the overall series 79-61. The Rockets hold a 38-30 advantage in games played in Toledo. Last season, BSU took three of the four games of the series. Ball State won the series finale 8-7, in which the Cardinals hit a walk-off homer. 

Scouting Toledo

The Rockets are led by Mason Sykes who’s hitting .318 with a team-high seven home runs. He also leads the squad with 24 RBIs and scored 17 runs. John Servello is the only other Rocket above .300 with a .305 average. Servello leads the team with 20 runs scored and has three doubles, three home runs, and a team-best eight stolen bases. Kyle Jones leads the pitching staff with 38 innings pitched. He has a 4-1 record and has a team-best 51 strikeouts. Jones has a 2.61 ERA and is the probable starter for game one. Connor Brandon is scheduled to get the start in game two for Toledo. He has an ERA of 4.62 with 25 1/3 innings pitched. Brandon has struck out 34 batters and has a 3-2 record. For game three, the Rockets are slated to send Jordan Power to the mound. Power has thrown 30 1/3 innings with an ERA of 3.86. He has 20 strikeouts and a record of 2-1.

Home Sweet Home; Softball Hosts Kent State This Weekend

MUNCIE, Ind. – – After playing its first 25 games of the year on the road, the Ball State softball team will finally get to play at home, as it hosts Kent State for a three-game weekend series at the Softball Field at First Merchants Ballpark Complex.

With yet more wet weather in the forecast for the weekend, the Cardinals (7-18; 0-2 Mid-American Conference) and Golden Flashes (9-14; 1-4 MAC) will be playing a doubleheader Friday at 1 p.m. and a single game Saturday at 1 p.m.

Ball State is coming off a bit of bad luck, after suffering a pair of walk off losses last Friday at Central Michigan. BSU rallied to tie the opening game with a two-out, three-run home run in the top of the seventh, only to have CMU answer with a run in the bottom of the frame to win the game 4-3.

In the nightcap, the Cardinals once again tied the score with two outs in the top of the seventh, and eventually took an 8-7 lead in the top of the ninth. The Chippewas answered again, however, scoring two in the bottom of the ninth to escape with the 9-8 (9) win.

A truly battle tested Ball State squad entered the CMU doubleheader coming of an impressive 4-3 victory at then-No. 18 Missouri to close its pre-conference slate, which is just the seventh win over a ranked opponent in program history.

The Cardinals nearly made it two ranked wins on the day, as the squad brought the tying run to the plate in the top of the seventh in its 5-2 loss to No. 14 Northwestern.

So far this season, Ball State has played 10 of its 25 games versus teams inside the top 100 in the latest NCAA RPI Rankings, including five against top 25 squads.


The Cardinals enter Friday’s doubleheader at Central Michigan with a 7-18 (0-2 MAC) record after dropping both ends of last Friday’s league doubleheader at Central Michigan … BSU rallied to tie the score with two outs in the top of the seventh in each contest, only to see its comeback bid fall short in each.

Despite facing some of the nation’s top pitching staffs, the Cardinals enter the weekend as one of the league’s top offenses with a .261 team batting average … Leading the way is senior left fielder Faith Hensley who is third in the MAC and 101st nationally with her .403 average.

Ball State’s power has still been there this season too, with the squad ranking 54th nationally with a 0.96 home runs per game average … BSU’s sluggers have belted 24 home runs so far this season, with nine different players going yard.

Ball State’s ability to double teams up has been a bright spot for the defense so far this season, as the Cardinals rank 10th nationally with 15 double plays so far this season … In addition, BSU’s 0.60 double plays per game average is third nationally.

The Cardinals have also been making moves on the base paths, tying for second among Mid-American Conference programs with 30 stolen bases … Leading the way is sophomore transfer Remington Ross, who is a perfect 12-for-12 so far this season, with her 12 stolen bases being third among all league players.


The Golden Flashes enter Friday’s doubleheader with a 9-14 (1-4 MAC) record … It’s been a busy week for Kent State, which is currently on spring break … Kent State started off by sweeping a Tuesday doubleheader at Purdue Fort Wayne, earning 11-1 (5) and 8-0 (6) victories … On Wednesday, the Golden Flashes suffered an 11-14 (9) setback at Indiana, tying the score at 8-8 with a five-run seventh to force extra innings … Then, KSU took an 11-8 lead with a three-run ninth, only to have the Hoosiers hit a pair of two-out, three run home runs to win the game the bottom of the inning.

Madison Hershberger leads the squad with a .306 batting average and is tied for second on the squad with 10 runs scored … Chloe Cruz has a team-high 10 RBI, to go along with two doubles, two triples, a home run, and a .244 average … In the circle, Jessica LeBeau as a team-high 55.1 innings of work, yielding a 3.16 ERA and a .224 opponents’ batting average … She has struck out a team-leading 72 batters and has a 3-7 record … Andrea Scali is not far behind with a 3.25 ERA and a .226 average against over 47.1 innings of work … Scali also has 59 strikeouts and a 1-6 record.

As a team, the Golden Flashes enter the weekend ranked last in the league with a .211 team batting average … In the circle, Kent State is fourth in the MAC with a 3.47 team ERA.


While the Golden Flashes own a 51-35 advantage in the all-time series, the Cardinals have won five of the last seven meetings.

Last season, the Cardinals swept a three-game home series versus KSU in the first regular season series played between the two programs since the 2018 season … Ball State won both games of an April 9 doubleheader by scores of 1-0 and 7-2, while earning a 5-3 victory on April 10 … Unfortunately, the fourth game of the series was rained out.

During last season’s three-game sweep catcher Delanie Johnson led the offense with a .667 average, tallying six hits in nine at bats, including a pair of home runs … She also tied for the team lead with four RBI.

Also tallying four RBI in the series was third baseman Haley Wynn, who capped the weekend with a three-run, walk-off home run in the series finale … She came up to bat with the Cardinals trailing by one and two outs in the bottom of the seventh and lasered a 3-2 pitch over the fence in center field … In addition, Wynn’s other RBI dove in the only run in BSU’s 1-0 victory to open the series.

Deborah Jones earned two of the wins in the circle last season, including the complete game shutout victory in the opener … Over 14 innings of work, she did not yield a single earned run … Her stat line for the weekend was a 0.00 ERA, a 2-0 record, 14.0 innings pitched, 14 hits allowed, three runs allowed, no earned runs allowed and four strikeouts … In fact, she only gave up one multiple base hit on the weekend, a double in the series finale.


Senior outfielder Faith Hensley has picked up right where she left off last season, leading the Ball State offense with a .403 batting average this season … She has reached base safely in 23 of BSU’s 25 games, including via a hit in 19 contests … She also leads the team with 19 RBI, including five in the Feb. 19 come-from-behind win over Western Carolina, and runs scored with 18.

A 2021 NFCA All-Great Lakes Region First Team selection last season, Faith Hensley enters the weekend ranked second in program history (minimum 150 at bats) with a .383 career batting average … She is also currently third in career slugging percentage (.681), based on the strength of her 19 career doubles, 17 career home runs and two career triples.

Sophomore shortstop Kayla Lissy registered BSU’s first triple of the season in the 3-2 (8) victory over Towson (Feb. 18) … Last season, Lissy tied for the NCAA Division I lead with nine triples and added an inside-the-park home run for good measure.

Kayla Lissy is also off to a strong start on the base paths, ranking second on the squad with five stolen bases … As a freshman, Lissy ranked fifth in the MAC with 18 stolen bases … Her 23 career stolen bases are already just three shy of breaking into the top 20 in program history, while her .852 (23-for-27) stolen base percentage is 10th on BSU’s career charts.

Ball State’s sluggers have blasted 24 total home runs so far this season, with nine different players getting into the action … Faith Henley leads the way with nine, while redshirt freshman first baseman / catcher McKayla Timmons, junior third baseman Haley Wynn and redshirt junior catcher Jazmyne Armendariz are tied for second with three apiece … Overall, 10 different players on the active roster have at least one career home run for the Cardinals.

Junior third baseman Haley Wynn enters the week ranked second on the squad with a .313 batting average … She has reached base safely in 21 of BSU’s 25 games this season, including a team-high 15 straight contests earlier in the year … Wynn has had at least one hit in 18 games, including a perfect 4-for-4 effort versus Albany (Feb. 19) for her first career four-hit game … She is also tied for the team lead with five doubles this season.

Sophomore outfielder Remington Ross enters the Kent State series ranked third in the league with 12 stolen bases this season … In fact, she is a perfect 12-for-12 on the year … Only four players in program history have finished a season with a perfect stolen base percentage, with Kim Manuel (16-for-16) being the last in 2019 … The Ball State record for most consecutive stolen bases without being thrown out is 32 set by Lisa Rozanski spanning the 2008 and 2009 seasons.

Overall, Ball State has stolen 30 total bases this season in 42 attempts … Last season, the Cardinals registered 62 stolen bases which was the 13th-highest single-season total in program history.

Junior pitcher Deborah Jones enters the weekend with 175 career strikeouts to rank 18th in program history … She needs 25 more strikeouts to become just the 15th pitcher in program history to reach 200 career Ks … Jones has a team-leading 41 strikeouts over 36.0 innings of work this season.

Deborah Jones earned her 20th career victory versus Northern Kentucky on March 5, allowing just one run and four hits, while striking out a career-high 12 batters in the 2-1 victory … It was her first win of the 2022 season, to go along with her seven wins as a freshman in 2020 and 12 last season … Jones is also two wins shy of breaking into the top 20 in program history.

Freshman pitcher Angelina Russo has been BSU’s go-to pitcher so far this season, entering the Kent State series with a team-high 62.2 innings of work … She has started 12 of BSU’s 25 games and owns a 4-6 record and a 5.59 ERA against some tough competition … In fact, she earned the win at No. 18 Missouri (March 20), holding the Tigers to just seven this and three runs (two earned) over 5.1 innings of work in the 4-3 victory.

Angelina Russo also earned the complete game victory at Grand Canyon (March 12), while turning in solid pitching performances at No. 23 Arizona State (March 13), vs. Stanford (March 19), and vs. No. 14 Northwestern (March 20).

Freshman pitcher Emma Eubank has been virtually flawless in her last four appearances, owning a 0.62 ERA and a .143 opponents’ batting average over 11.1 innings of work … She picked up the save in BSU’s win over No. 18 Missouri (March 20) after holding the Tigers hitless over 1.2 innings of work … She also threw 3.0 innings of hitless softball earlier in the day versus the No. 14 Northwestern (March 20).


SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame softball team returns to the diamond tomorrow evening as they host the Georgia Tech Yellowjackets in a three-game series at Melissa Cook Stadium. The weekend is also the program’s annual Strikeout Cancer event as the Fighting Irish will be hosting a variety of events throughout the weekend.

Along with wearing orange trimmed uniforms this weekend, the Irish will be hosting a trivia night Saturday night at the South Bend Cubs facility. Registration for the trivia night can be found here. Following the series on Sunday, the team is hosting a home run derby at Melissa Cook Stadium. Fans can pre-pay or pay day of game and register for their chance to participate in the event here.

The Irish enter the weekend’s series winners of the their last nine games. In that nine-game winning streak, Notre Dame is outscoring opponents 76-13. Over the past four games, the Irish have allowed just four runs. In her last outing Alexis Holloway no-hit Loyola Chicago. Payton Tidd threw a 7.0 innings one-hit game against Duke before coming in to retire all 12 hitters she faced Wednesday night. At home this season, the Irish have earned a 5-0 mark, defeating Detroit Mercy, Western Michigan, Duke, Loyola Chicago and Central Michigan.

Georgia Tech enters with a 24-9 record, having won their last eight games. The Yellowjackets took the final two games from Louisville, swept a midweek doubleheader with Dartmouth and a three-game ACC series with Syracuse. Georgia Tech won its midweek game with Kennesaw State at home, 5-2. Georgia Tech was picked to finish seventh in the preseason poll and had two players on the Preseason All-ACC team in Tricia Awald and Emma Kauf.

Awald leads the Georgia Tech offense with a .398 batting average in 33 games. She leads the team in slugging percentage with 10 doubles a triple and five home runs while driving in 26. Kauf is hitting at a .327 average with a team-best 37 hits and 11 doubles. Also hitting over .300 is Aubrun Dupree, at .306 in 21 starts. All 15 hits have been singles, scoring 13 runs and stealing a team-best 11 bases.

The Yellowjacket pitching staff has a 2.51 ERA, led by Blake Neleman. Neleman has started a team-best 17 games and appeared in a team-best 24 games. She’s earned a 1.09 ERA in 109.1 innings with 131 strikeouts. Chandler Dennis has a 2.62 ERA in 13 starts. She’s logged the second-most innings at 77.1, striking out 68 hitters. Sophia Voyles owns the best ERA on the team at 1.37 in 15.1 innings of work in six appearances.

Tussles with Tech

In 20 matchups with the Yellowjackets, Notre Dame owns a 16-4 record. In Atlantic Coast Conference play, the Irish are 12-4 and are 6-0 at Melissa Cook Stadium. The Irish have won seven of the last eight games and took two of three last season in Atlanta.

Melissa Home Cooked

In the last four seasons, Notre Dame has gone a combined 31-2 at Melissa Cook Stadium, including a perfect 15-0 at home last season. In the Gumpf-era, the Irish are 290-63 when defending home turf and have won the last 23 home games.

Pitching Prowess

In the past three games, the Irish have allowed just two runs. Last time out, Alexis Holloway threw her second career solo no-hitter, and its the fourth no-hitters she’s thrown in at Notre Dame. Payton Tidd held the then-ACC’s top offense to just one hit as the Irish defeated No. 7 Duke 8-1 last Friday night. Shannon Becker worked 7.0 innings of shutout softball in the series with Pitt, before allowing a run to go with three strikeouts Wednesday against Central Michigan.

Thou Shalt Not Steal

The catching combination of Shelby Grimm and Carlli Kloss have limited the opponents running game better than any tandem in the ACC. Kloss has thrown out four of eight attempted base stealers, and Grimm has tossed out six of 14 attempts. Combined, the Irish have thrown out 10 of 24 attempted base stealers and the .583 stolen base allowed percentage is the lowest in the conference. Grimm also picked off a runner this season.

Getting Out of the Blocks

Notre Dame has scored 40 runs in the first inning of games this season, and 109 runs in the first three innings this season. When scoring in the first inning, the Irish are 13-2 this season and when scoring the first run of the game Notre Dame is 21-2 on the season. The Irish have hit six of their 27 home runs in the first inning this season, the most of any inning.

National and ACC Player of the Week

Karina Gaskins had one of the most productive weeks in all of NCAA softball two weeks ago, leading the Irish to a 5-0 record and a three-game ACC sweep at Pitt. She finished the week 12-for-16 with a double, two home runs, eight runs scored and 11 RBI. She had at least one hit and one RBI in all five games, four of which were multi-hit and multi-RBI games.

Over the last 10 games, she’s hitting at a .760 average with four home runs, 18 RBI and scored 13 runs.

Record Setting Night

In the home opener against Detroit Mercy, the Fighting Irish scored 18 runs, tying a school record for runs scored and the largest margin of victory. The original record was set March 11, 1994 in an 18-0 victory over Robert Morris. Eight of nine starters had a hit and five players who didn’t start the contest registered one of the 18 hits. 15 different players scored a run in the victory.

Any Means Necessary

Offensive stand out Abby Sweet picked up right where she left off after a record-setting on-base percentage in 2021 (.537). She’s second on the team with a .518 on-base percentage this season. (Gaskins – .557 OBP) She owns a .415 batting average, drawn nine walks and has been hit by 11 pitches. The 11 hit by pitches in 31 games ranks 10th nationally in HBP per game. Her .745 slugging percentage is second-highest among the Notre Dame regulars. (Gaskins – .817)

Bench Bombs

In a pair of midweek games, the Irish have had a couple career firsts. Against Detroit Mercy, Bryn Boznanski hit her first career home run in a pinch hit role in the fourth. Rachel Allen did the same in her pinch hit appearance against Loyola Chicago. Notre Dame pinch hitters are 17-for-58 (.293) this season.

Lineup Shuffle

After starting the season 14-4, Notre Dame made a move in the lineup switching Leea Hanks and Abby Sweet. Hanks took over in the lead off role and Sweet assumed Hanks’s role in the 3-spot. Since that move, the Irish are 11-2, Sweet is hitting for a .421 average with three doubles and three home runs. Hanks has four doubles, three triples and hit her ifrst home run as the lead off hitter. The biggest difference in the lineup has come from cleanup hitter Karina Gaskins. Since the move, Gaskins is hitting .697 with 23 RBI, six home runs, seen an 11:3 BB:K ratio and has scored 15 runs.

Working in TRANsistion

Emily Tran has appeared in 21 games this season, all of which have come as a pinch runner. In that role, she’s scored nine times, and is 6-for-6 in stolen base attempts. She’s the primary speedster off the bench for the Irish.

An Extra Run

After averaging five runs per game in 2021, the Irish offense has upped that number to 6.48 per game this season, ranking 17th in the country and second in the ACC. Abby Sweet has scored 34 runs this season, ranking 22nd nationally in runs scored per game.

Top 25 wins

After falling in the first three games of the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational, the Irish went on to take down a pair of Top 25 teams in LSU and Texas.

Against LSU, the Irish rallied late, using a fifth inning home run from Payton Tidd to tie it, and Miranda Johnson drove in the game-winning runs in the seventh. Tidd shut the door as the Irish earned the 8-6 win.

Notre Dame followed that with a 9-2 win over then No. 9-Texas. A 7-run fifth inning paved the way for the first win over a top 10-nationally ranked opponent since beating No. 3 Florida State in Tallahassee in 2019.

The Irish added a top 10 win after knocking off No. 7 Duke at home. Notre Dame used a 3-for-3, 4 RBI performance from Karina Gaskins and got a dominant start from Payton Tidd. Tidd worked 7.0 innings and allowed just one hit in the 8-1 victory.

Sister Sister

Notre Dame softball has a pair of sisters on its roster this season. Shelby and Cassidy Grimm are playing their second collegiate season together in 2022. Alexis and Anna Holloway are playing their first year of softball together this season. The extra year of eligibility for Alexis allowed for her to stay at Notre Dame long enough to play with her younger sister.


University of Notre Dame senior defenseman Spencer Stastney has signed a two-year entry-level contract that will begin with the 2022-23 season, the Nashville Predators announced (March 31).

Stastney was originally a fifth round selection (131st overall) by Nashville in the 2018 NHL Draft.

A 2021-22 Honorable Mention All-Big Ten team honoree, Stastney helped lead Notre Dame to the NCAA Albany Regional Final.

Stastney, who served as an alternate captain in 2021-22, skated in 39 games and tied for second on the team with 27 points (7-20-27). His seven goals, 20 assists and a27 points were all career-high totals and he was the only defenseman with multiple shorthanded goals this season. He had the top plus/minus on the team at +18 and his 20 assists ranked second on the Irish. He also blocked 69 shots to rank second on the Irish and in the Big Ten and tied for 11th in the country. He served a key role in Notre Dame’s top-ranked penalty kill unit.

The Mequon, Wisconsin native finished his career with 16 goals and 47 assists for 63 points in 143 games played and a +28 rating. Following the 2021-22 season, he was voted as the team’s Monogram Club MVP, marking the second defenseman in the Jeff Jackson era to earn the honor (Robbie Russo, 2014-15).

A Film, Television and Theatre & Finance double major, Stastney is a Senior Class Award finalist and was named an 2021-22 Honorable Mention All-Big Ten selection.


Named an alternate captain for the 2021-22 season.

Began season on a three-game point streak, including an assist on the overtime game winner at Michigan Tech (Oct. 9-16; 0-3-3).

Set a career-high for assists in a game with three in 5-1 home win over Wisconsin (Nov. 12).

Earned first multi-goal game of his career with two goals, including the game-tying goal, in the 3-2 win over Michigan State (Dec. 10).

Notched a goal against Niagara (Jan. 1).

Recorded assists in three straight games, capped off by an assist on Max Ellis’ last-second overtime winner at Penn State (Jan. 8).

Scored the overtime game winner to knock off Ohio State on the road, 3-2 (Jan. 14).

The overtime game winner against the Buckeyes set a career-high point streak with five games (Jan. 1-14; 2-3-5).

Tied a career-high in points with a goal and two assists in 8-2 victory over Boston College (Jan. 19).

Notched two assists against Minnesota, including one on Landon Slaggert’s overtime game winner (Jan. 29).

Tallied a goal and an assist en route to a 4-2 victory at Michigan State (Feb. 19).

Scored the final goal on a breakaway to seal the 4-1 win over No. 2 Michigan (Feb. 25).

Assisted on Trevor Janicke’s game winner in the closing minutes against No. 2 Michigan (Feb. 26) on senior night to extend his point streak to three games (Feb. 19-26; 2-2-4).

Assisted on Trevor Janicke’s game-winning goal with 20.7 seconds left in game 2 of the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals against Wisconsin (Mar. 5).


Fourteen former Fighting Irish players have played in the NHL this season: Anders Bjork (Buffalo Sabres), Ian Cole (Carolina Hurricanes), Jake Evans (Montreal Canadiens), Steven Fogarty (Boston Bruins),  Jordan Gross (Colorado Avalanche) Vinnie Hinostroza (Buffalo Sabres), Anders Lee (New York Islanders), Kyle Palmieri (New York Islanders), Andrew Peeke (Columbus), Cal Petersen (Los Angeles Kings), Bryan Rust (Pittsburgh Penguins), Riley Sheahan (Seattle Kraken), Alex Steeves (Toronto Maple Leafs) and TJ Tynan (Los Angeles Kings).

Steeves made his NHL debut for the Toronto Maple Leafs on Dec. 7 against Columbus (and former Notre Dame teammate Andrew Peeke) in a 5-4 Toronto win.

Steeves, who earned Second Team All-Big Ten honors in 2020-21, became the 25th former Irish player under head coach Jeff Jackson to reach the NHL and the Notre Dame program’s 39th NHL player overall.

Prior to Steeves, the most recent Notre Dame players to make their NHL debuts were Jordan Gross, Peeke, Jake Evans and Thomas DiPauli during the 2019-20 season.

Former Fighting Irish All-American goaltender Cale Morris (Chicago) and former captain Cal Burke (Colorado) inked NHL deals around the first of the year and were recalled to their teams’ respective taxi squads.

Morris, who played from 2016-20 and led the Irish to the 2018 NCAA Championship game, signed a one-year entry-level deal on Dec. 31.

Burke, who also played from 2016-20 with the Irish, signed a one-year contract with Colorado on Dec. 16 and later was recalled to the taxi squad.

Former Irish captain Steven Fogarty made his Boston debut late in January to become the 14th former Fighting Irish player to appear in the NHL this season.


SOUTH BEND, Ind. — The 13th-ranked Notre Dame baseball team (13-5, 2-4 ACC) is off on the road and a top-15 matchup awaits in Tallahassee. The Irish and fifth-ranked Seminoles (16-8, 6-3 ACC) are set to face off for a three-game series starting Friday night from Dick Howser Stadium. The series-opener is set for a 7 p.m. ET first pitch and will be streamed on the ACC Network Extra. Head coach Link Jarrett is returning to his alma mater this weekend as he was a four-year starter for the Seminoles from 1991-94.


.744        The Irish own a 29-10 record (.744) on the road in three years under head coach Link Jarrett.

.744        The Irish are 58-20 (.744) since the start of the 2020 season. That winning percentage ranks seventh in the NCAA over the past three seasons.

.988        Notre Dame ranks second in the NCAA in fielding percentage with a .988 mark this season. The Irish have committed only eight errors in 484 putout opportunities this season.

1              The Irish allowed only one hit in the 3-1 win over Minnesota on March 6. It is the fewest hits allowed in a game since April 18, 2007, when the Irish surrendered one hit in a 1-0 win over Purdue in 10-innings.

1.17        Notre Dame is 10th in the NCAA and third in the ACC with a 1.17 WHIP this season. They have surrendered 118 hits and 71 walks in 161.1 innings pitched.

3.40        The Irish rank 14th nationally and third in the ACC in team ERA with 3.40. They have given up 61 earned runs in 161.1 innings this season.

6.58        The Irish are fifth in the NCAA and second in the ACC with 6.58 hits allowed per nine innings. They have given up 118 hits in 161.1 innings pitched this season.

7              Notre Dame tallied seven team steals in the midweek win over Northern Illinois. It was the most steals in a game for the Irish since March 1, 2020, when they stole seven against Presbyterian.

8              The Irish scored eight unanswered runs in the 8-4 comeback win over #17 NC State on March 11. It was the most unanswered runs in a game since Game 2 of the Super Regional when the Irish scored nine unanswered runs to beat #7 Mississippi State.

11.5        The Irish rank eighth in the NCAA and third in the ACC in strikeouts per nine innings with 11.5. The Irish pitching staff has struck out 207 batters in 161.1 innings this season.

14           Notre Dame is 14-2-1 all-time in regular-season series under Jarrett. The Irish are 8-1 in ACC series on the road and are 12-2-1 in ACC series over the past three seasons.

15           In the 20-2 win over Marist, 15 different Irish players recorded a hit. It is the most players with a hit in a game for the Irish over the past 16 years. The previous record was 13 against Georgetown in 2008.

57           Outfielder Spencer Myers has 57 steals in his Irish career and ranks eighth all-time in program history for most career steals. He trails AJ Pollock by four for seventh place in program history.

Irish and Seminoles Renew Acquaintances

The Irish are off for their third ACC road series as they head south to take on #5 Florida State.

Head coach Link Jarrett will be heading back to his alma mater this weekend as he was a four-year starter for the Seminoles and Mike Martin Sr. from 1991-94.

The Seminoles went to the College World Series in three of his four years in Tallahassee and Jarrett is still in the NCAA record book for the most career assists. He tallied 802 assists over 276 games with Florida State and that mark still ranks No. 1 in all of college baseball.

Jarrett ranks first in the Seminole record book for consecutive games played for his career (235) and is second all-time in games played (276).

Jarrett and Seminole head coach Mike Martin Jr. were teammates during the 1993 and 1994 seasons. Martin Jr. was the starting catcher and Jarrett the starting second baseman in Florida State’s College World Series run in 1994.

The Seminoles are ranked as high as No. 5 in the weekly polls and are 16-8 and 6-3 in ACC play heading into the top-15 matchup.

Florida State went 2-2 this past week as they won the weekend series over Duke at home and fell in a midweek matchup against #14 Florida in Jacksonville.

This will be the second ranked opponent the Seminoles have faced this year after facing the 14th-ranked Gators in the midweek matchup.

The Seminoles lead the all-time series between the two schools 21-10 and they are 12-4 against the Irish in games in Tallahassee.

Last season, Florida State won the series against the Irish after taking two-of-three games at Frank Eck Stadium in the final home series of the regular season.

The Irish are 13-5 and 2-4 in ACC play heading into the weekend after a midweek win over Northern Illinois.

This will be the third ACC road series this season for the Irish and they are 1-1 this year with a road series win at NC State and dropped the series at Louisville.

All-time under Jarrett, the Irish are 14-2-1 in series and 8-1 in ACC series on the road.

Notre Dame is 14-8 against ranked opponents under Jarrett and they are 10-4 against ranked teams on the road. This season, the Irish are 2-0 after winning both games against #17 NC State back in March.


Announced by Inside Lacrosse/Inside Lacrosse Women on Thursday morning, Madison Ahern and Kasey Choma are midseason All-Americans.

Ahern currently leads the Irish in goals (32) and points (43) with six games remaining in the 2022 season. Ahern notched her 100th career point during the win versus Virginia. The Irish took down Virginia in a 12-10 win. Ahern is ranked fourth in the ACC in shots per game (6.70) and eighth in goals per game (3.20).

Choma is not far behind as she is second on the team in goals (30) and in points (36). She also hit a career milestone this season as Choma tallied her 100th career point in the win over Jacksonville. The Irish beat Jacksonville in a commanding 20-5 win. Choma is also third on the team in draw controls with 28.

Indiana State welcomes Illinois State to open Missouri Valley play

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State is back in action this weekend as the Sycamores start Missouri Valley Conference play with a three-game set against Illinois State starting on Friday afternoon.

First pitch in the opener is set for 3 p.m. on ESPN3, while Saturday’s contest is set for 2 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. All three games will also be carried live on 105.5 The Legend with live stats on

Memphis Recap

Indiana State took both contests of the weekend series against Memphis this past Friday and Sunday as the Sycamores topped the Tigers in the non-conference matchup at Bob Warn Field. Indiana State took the opener, 12-0, and then followed up with a 3-1 win in the Sunday finale to tie up the all-time series at 6-6.

Jordan Schaffer and Randall Diaz broke the Friday game open in the series opener against Memphis in ISU’s 12-0 win. Schaffer opened up the offensive scoring with a two-run triple in the bottom of the fifth, while Diaz followed with a two-run home run to give the Sycamores the 4-0 lead. The Sycamores added two more runs in the sixth on a Grant Magill sacrifice fly and a Seth Gergely double, before blowing the game wide open with a six-run eighth inning thanks to a pair of Memphis errors.

The Indiana State offense aided another strong pitching effort from Matt Jachec as the redshirt sophomore right-hander went 7.0 strong innings in his third quality start in a row. Jachec allowed four hits while striking out six on the way to his Missouri Valley leading fifth win of the year.

After Saturday’s contest was called due to the weather, Indiana State and Memphis battled in Sunday’s finale. Sean Ross doubled twice, while Joey Hurth struck out five Tigers over the final three innings in the Sycamores’ 3-1 win. Ross drove in the first ISU run of the game with a RBI double in the sixth, while Jordan Schaffer and Grant Magill added late RBI in support of the Sycamores pitching staff.

On the mound, Jake Ridgway carried a perfect game through four innings and a no-hitter threw five before turning the ball over to the ISU bullpen. Jack Parisi, Connor Fenlong, and Joey Hurth went the rest of the way with Hurth picking up his third win out of the bullpen.

Scouting Illinois State

Illinois State enters the weekend with a 9-9 overall record in the 2022 season following their midweek contest against Eastern Illinois. The Redbirds opened the year with a signature 3-2 win over then-No. 2 Arkansas and added a series sweep over Western Carolina over the first two weeks of the spring. Illinois State also handed then-No. 19 Purdue its first loss of the 2022 season with a 4-3 victory in Normal, Ill. back on March 17.

Illinois State tied for third overall in the Missouri Valley preseason baseball rankings with the Redbirds tying with Southern Illinois with 39 total points overall. The Redbirds returned six positional starters and seven key pitchers to the roster after a 23-34 overall record that saw Illinois State finish sixth overall in the Valley’s standings. Redshirt junior first baseman Jake McCaw and sophomore outfielder Ryan Cermak were both recognized on the Missouri Valley preseason All-Conference team.

Cermak and McCaw continue to be Illinois State’s leaders at the plate in the 2022 season heading into conference play. The duo are both hitting over .300 on the season and have combined for 10 of the Redbirds 16 home runs. Overall, Illinois State is hitting .264 from the plate as a team.

The Redbirds strength has been on the mound this season with eight players posting a sub-5.00 ERA on the season, including six sitting with an under 4.00 ERA. Sean Sinisko (1-1, 3.20 ERA) has been one of the team’s leaders, while Derek Salata (2-2, 3.63 ERA) has posted team-highs in both innings pitched (34.2) and strikeouts (35). Jared Hart (1.96 ERA) is the team’s pitching leader with 12 appearances.

Redbirds Top Player

Redshirt junior first baseman Jake McCaw has been one of the top hitters in the Missouri Valley Conference this season as the Bloomington, Ill. native headlines the Illinois State offense on the year. McCaw opened the season hitting safely in six of the first seven games, including homering in all three contests against Western Carolina. He added a two-homer game against Saint Louis on March 25 and has posted seven multi-hit games on the year.

Opponent History

Indiana State holds the 112-83 all-time advantage over Illinois State dating back to the first matchup in the series in the 1906 season. No record of that game’s score exists in the Indiana State archives, but the Sycamores did pick up the 10-4 win in the 1948 season in the first recorded score between the teams. ISU last hosted Illinois State at Bob Warn Field back in 2018 with the Redbirds taking two of the three games in the matchup. Indiana State is 63-29 all-time at home at Bob Warn Field against the Redbirds.

Last Time against Illinois State

The Sycamores took three of the four meetings last season in Normal, Ill., before topping the Redbirds, 5-2, in the first round of the MVC Tournament. Indiana State took the win in the first round of the MVC Tournament last season in Carbondale behind a complete-game effort 2021 MVC Pitcher of the Year Geremy Guerrero. The left-hander struck out four Redbirds and surrendered just one free base over the nine-inning outing, while Ellison Hanna II connected on a pair of home runs to highlight the Sycamores win.

Non-Conference Round-Up

Indiana State has posted a 13-7 overall record in non-conference play heading into the start of Missouri Valley action this weekend. The Sycamores have posted a 6-3 record in neutral site contests and a 6-1 home mark at Bob Warn Field this season, while sitting 1-3 in true road games. Highlighting Indiana State’s schedule includes wins over BYU, Marshall, Merrimack, Minnesota (twice), Michigan, Wright State, SEMO (twice), Kansas (twice), and Memphis (twice).

Weather Impacts

Indiana State has seen a trio of games affected by weather over the last two weeks with the Sycamores having contests against Indiana and Purdue postponed, while game two of the Memphis series was canceled due to weather. At this time, the games are not scheduled to be made up.

‘Dons Resume League Play With Oakland

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Purdue Fort Wayne softball team will get back to Horizon League play when they welcome Oakland on Friday and Saturday (April 1-2) for three games.

Game Day Information

Who: Oakland Golden Grizzlies (7-8, 3-0 Horizon) at Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons (4-21, 3-5 Horizon)

When: April 1-2

Where: Fort Wayne, Ind.

Live Stats: Link

Schedule of Games

Friday, April 1: single game at 4 p.m.

Saturday, April 2: doubleheader starting at 1 p.m.

Know Your Foe

Oakland is 7-8, 3-0 Horizon League, but has only played since March 16, a non-league game at Michigan State. The Golden Grizzlies have had their last two league series postponed due to weather. Lauren Griffith is leading the team with a .357 batting average and a .571 slugging percentage. Sydney Campbell is pacing the Golden Grizzlies’ pitching staff, tossing a 2.93 ERA in 76.1 innings pitched. The other two pitchers on staff have only combined for 18.0 innings.

Series History

The Mastodons and Golden Grizzlies have met 32 times, with Oakland owning a 17-15 edge in the series history. OU took five of the last six games, which all came in 2021. The ‘Dons won one game 9-8 last season, which came on a walk-off grand slam from Camryn Mosher.

Wintlend in the Books

Brooke Wintlend has a slugging percentage of .667, which is in the top-10 in program history for a single season.

1. .812 – Kristina Karpun (2010)

2. .713 – Ashleigh Bousquet (2013)

3. .667 – Brooke Wintlend (2022)

    .667 – Dawn Freeman (1993)

5. .613 – Cassie Wolfe (2011)

6. .596 – Alex Bousquet (2012)

    .596 – Ashleigh Bousquet (2014)

8. .592 – Ashleigh Bousquet (2011)

9. .586- Betsy Andrews (2000)

10. .585 – Cassie Wolfe (2010)

Breath of Fresh Eyre

Shaina Eyre is seventh in program history with 20 career wins. Eyre is also third in program history in career pitching appearances with 110, behind just Courtney Cronin (122) and Mindy Pomeroy (111).

1. 63 – Courtney Cronin (2009-12)

2. 59 – Miranda Kramer (2012-14)

3. 40 – Megan Flenniken (2011-14)

4. 24 – Angie Quickery (1992-94)

5. 23 – Rachel Staschuk (2008-11)

6. 22 – Mindy Pomeroy (2001-04)

7. 20 – Shaina Eyre (2018-present)

In League Play…

>> Brooke Wintlend is slugging .950, which is third-best in the in the league. Alise Hale is sixth with .857.

>> Brooke Wintlend has a 1.450 OPS, which is also third in the league. Alise Hale is sixth with 1.395.

>> Alise Hale has scored 10 runs, which leads the league. Brooke Wintlend (7) and Emma McMillan (6) are also in the top-10.

>> Brooke Wintlend has five home runs, the third-most in the league.

>> Taryn Jenkins has drawn six walks, the second-most in the league.

>> Sonia Solis has 12 RBIs, which is a league-best.

>> Lauren McConnell and Shaina Eyre have two of the three saves in league play.

Streaky ‘Dons

The following Mastodons have a streak of games this season where they get on base

>> 9 – Sonia Solis

>> 8 – Brooke Wintlend

>> 6 – Taryn Jenkins, Brayden Lickey, Emma McMillan

>> 5 – Alise Hale, Thais Uyema

>> 4 – Taylor Warne

>> 3 – Epiphany Hang

All Hail Alise Hale

Alise Hale has started all 25 games at second base this season. She has started in the 3-spot 14 times, the most of any player in any spot in the batting order.

Smarty Pants

Five current Mastodons were named NFCA All-America Scholar Athletes in 2021: Shaina Eyre, Ashley Haas, Alise Hale, Jadelyn Johnson and Emma McMillan. Hale is a two-time honoree. All five student-athletes were required to maintain a 3.5 cumulative GPA or better over the year to earn the award.

Last Time Out

Kent State took a pair of non-league games from the Mastodons on Tuesday (March 29).

Next Time Up

The Mastodons will step out of league play again next week when they visit Eastern Illinois on Wednesday, April 6  for a doubleheader.

League Favorite Wright State Comes to Fort Wayne This Weekend

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Mastodon baseball team hosts Wright State this weekend in Horizon League play. It will be a battle of the two teams at the top of the league in home runs. Saturday’s game will be played at Indiana Tech due to the Mastodon softball team also home this weekend.

Game Day Information

What: Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons (4-19, 2-4 Horizon) vs. Wright State Raiders (9-13, 4-2 Horizon)

Where: Fort Wayne, Ind.


Friday, April 1 | Noon | Mastodon Field

Saturday, April 2 | 2 p.m. | Indiana Tech

Sunday, April 3 | 1 p.m. | Mastodon Field

Live Stats: Link

Weather: Friday: 43/27, partly cloudy | Saturday: 49/34, rain possible | Sunday: 53/35, partly cloudy

Series History: Series tied 4-4.

Scouting the Raiders: Wright State’s Alec Sayre is fourth in the league in hitting with a .363 batting average. He has a league-best 33 hits. Sayre is one of three Raiders in the top six in the league in walks. Gehrig Anglin is the only player in the league with double-digit home runs. He has 10. On the mound, Sebastian Gongora is third in the league in batters struck out with 33.

Probable Starters:


Game 1: RHP Rex Stills (4.15 ERA, 1-2)

Game 2: RHP Mitchell Spencer (4.91 ERA, 1-1)

Game 3: TBD


Game 1: Jake Shirk (6.91 ERA, 1-4)

Game 2: Sebastian Gongora (7.81 ERA, 2-1)

Game 3: Alex Theis (5.79 ERA, 1-0)

‘Dons Dig The Long Ball: Purdue Fort Wayne is tied with Wright State for the league lead in home runs with 25. Cade Fitzpatrick and Ben Higgins are tied for second in the league with five home runs.

‘Dons Dig The Long Ball X2: Nine different Mastodons have a home run this season.

‘Dons Dig The Long Ball X3: The ‘Dons have hit a home run in six straight games. Five of the six games have featured multiple home runs.

‘Dons Dig The Long Ball X4: Cade Fitzpatrick is tied for the league in home runs with four in league play. Gehrig Anglin also has four for Wright State in league play.

Is That Good?: Cade Fitzpatrick is 21-of-42 (.500) in his last 12 starts with 11 runs scored.

Turn It Up To 11: The ‘Dons scored a season-high 11 runs on Tuesday in the win at Valparaiso.

Four More: Jack Lang had four hits on Tuesday at Valparaiso, matching his career high. Two of the hits were home runs, giving him his first career multi-home run game.

Send Them In Jack: Jack Lang’s five RBIs against Valparaiso were not only a career high for him, it was the first time a Mastodon knocked in five runs since Jackson Boyce on April 4, 2017 against Cleary.

3 In 2 In 1!: Twice this season a Mastodon has hit three home runs in a doubleheader. Braedon Blackford hit three home runs in a doubleheader against California Baptist (Feb. 26). Cade Fitzpatrick hit three home runs in a twin bill against Youngstown State (March 20). Fitzpatrick was named one of the best hitters of March 20th by

Will You Accept These Ben Higgins Stats?:

– He has two or more hits in five of his last six starts. He has 10 runs in this stretch. 

– He is tied for the team lead in runs scored with 15.

– He is tied for the team lead in home runs with five.

– He is third on the team in total bases with 37 and slugging percentage (.487).

Miller Time: Justin Miller owns 155 career strikeouts, sixth in program history.

Strikeout Time: Justin Miller and Mitchell Spencer are tied for sixth in the league with 29 strikeouts.

New Faces: The 2022 Mastodon roster features 15 returners from last season and 18 newcomers.

Up Next: The ‘Dons travel to Michigan on Wednesday (April 6).


OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – IUPUI women’s basketball standout Macee Williams closed out her impressive career with the Jaguars in the NCAA Tournament on March 19th but Williams continues to add to her long list of accolades. The graduate student was named to the 2021-22 Senior CLASS Award First Team. Williams is one of five student-athletes selected to the first team list.

The Senior CLASS Award, an acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, is for a student-athlete classified as an NCAA Division 1 senior and shows notable achievements in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition.

Williams is the four-time Horizon League Player of the Year and is only the fourth Division 1 women’s basketball student-athlete to be named conference Player of the Year four times. She collected four Horizon League Player of the Week awards this season to bring her career total to 13 awards with the Jags.

The graduate student out of Veedersburg, Ind. recorded ten double-doubles during the regular season and averaged a double-double with 18.7 points and 10.7 rebounds per game in 27 games played. Williams led the league in rebounds per game and field goal percentage at 63.8 percent. She also averaged 2.3 assists and 1.4 steals per game.

Williams will go down in IUPUI history as she is the Jaguar’s all-time leader in rebounds and scoring. She was recently named one of the ten semifinalists for the 2022 Becky Hammon Mid-Major Player of the Year.

As a leader of the IUPUI women’s basketball team, Williams has used her platform to make a positive impact in the community. During her time as a Jaguar, she became involved with the Christian Student Fellowship (CSF) and helped with a program called FAME, which is a medical evangelism program that helps repurpose medical supplies for those in need. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Williams and fellow Jags would visit the Riley Children’s Hospital to visit with kids, make arts and crafts and play games.

Williams also excels in the classroom and has already earned her undergraduate degree in sport management with a 3.2 GPA. She was named to the IUPUI’s Academic Advisor’s List five times and is now pursuing a master’s degree in elementary education.

The award is chosen by a nationwide vote of Division I women’s basketball coaches, national basketball media, and fans. Lexie Hull of Stanford was selected as the 2021-22 Senior CLASS Award winner in NCAA Division I women’s basketball.

The full list of honorees is below.

2021-22 Senior CLASS Award First Team:

Rhyne Howard,Kentucky

Ali Patberg, Indiana

Sam Thomas, Arizona

Macee Williams, IUPUI.

Second Team:

Elissa Cunane, NC State

Naz Hillmon, Michigan

Morgan Jones, Florida State

Sonya Morris, DePaul

NaLyssa Smith, Baylor.

Robert Washington to Participate in Pro Day

The Valparaiso University football program will be represented by Robert Washington (Huntersville, N.C. / East Gaston [Old Dominion]) at a Pro Day hosted by Charlotte in Charlotte, N.C. on Friday, April 1.

Washington, who earned All-Pioneer Football League First Team honors each of the last two seasons and was the Spring 2021 PFL Offensive Player of the Year, is one of nearly 25 individuals expected to display their skills for attending professional scouts.

Following registration and meetings, Pro Day activities are set to begin between 8-9 a.m. Eastern Time (7-8 a.m. Central Time) at Jerry Richardson Stadium.

Washington finished the Fall 2021 season with 1,105 rushing yards, the second-highest output in program history behind 1,358 by Jeff Horton in 2005. He became just the third 1,000-yard rusher in Valpo lore and tied the program record for single-season rushing touchdowns with 14. Despite playing only 17 games in a Brown & Gold uniform, the North Carolina native finished with 1,758 career rushing yards, a total that ranks ninth in program history.

Washington finished the season ranked 12th nationally in all-purpose yards per game at 131.27. He ranked ninth in the FCS nation in rushing TDs, 10th in rushing yards per game (100.5) and eighth in total rushing yards.

Home Opener Finally On Deck for Softball

Valparaiso (9-15, 1-5 MVC)

April 2 – Bradley (14-15, 2-4 MVC) – noon DH

April 3 – Bradley – noon

Next Up in Valpo Softball: After playing its first 24 games of the season away from home, the Valpo softball team finally will take to the field at the Valpo Softball Complex this weekend as the Beacons welcome Bradley to town for a three-game MVC series.

Previously: Valpo dropped a three-game series at Missouri State last weekend, and most recently stepped out of conference play briefly on Tuesday afternoon, falling 3-0 at Western Michigan.

Looking Ahead: The Beacons continue a lengthy homestand next weekend with a three-game series versus Southern Illinois.

Following Valpo Softball: All three of this weekend’s games will be broadcast live on ESPN3, the first live broadcasts from the Valpo Softball Complex since the move to the MVC. Todd Ickow will be on play-by-play Saturday and Brian Jennings Sunday, and both will be joined by analyst Kathy Levandoski. Live stats for all three games will also be available via

Head Coach Amanda Eberhart: Amanda Eberhart was hired as head coach of the Valpo softball program in July of 2021. She brings seven years of head coaching experience at the Division I level, most recently spending the last three years as the head coach at Omaha and previously leading the IUPUI program for four seasons. Eberhart, who owns 140 career victories as a head coach, also has eight seasons of experience on staffs at Big Ten programs.

Series History: Valpo owns a 6-8 record all-time against Bradley and has a slim 5-4 advantage since joining the MVC. Last season, Bradley won two of the three games in the series contested in Peoria. The last time the Braves visited the Valpo Softball Complex, it was a three-game series sweep for Valpo in 2018 by scores of 2-1, 4-1 and 1-0.

Scouting the Opposition: The Braves come to Valpo with a 14-15 overall mark so far this season and a 2-4 record in MVC play. Most recently, Bradley dropped two of three games at Indiana State, as after winning the series opener via run rule by a 9-1 final, the Braves fell in back-to-back one-run games, 7-6 and 5-4. Abbott Badgley leads the Braves with a 1.042 OPS, while Samantha Smith has scored a team-high 23 runs and Grace French has tallied a team-best 19 RBIs. In the circle, French has seen the most work and owns a 3-7 record with a 2.73 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 66.2 innings, while Badgley has a 6-2 record and a 2.70 ERA in 44 innings of action.

What’s Back: Valpo returns 14 of 19 letterwinners from last season’s squad for the 2022 campaign. In all, 77.6% of Valpo’s plate appearances are back for this season and 89.8% of last season’s inning pitched return as well.

Who’s New: After redshirting due to injury last season, Kylie Millhorn looks for her first collegiate action this spring. In addition, four true freshmen – Addi Weaver, Cheyenne Nietz, Kaiah Fenters and Lauren Sena – round out Valpo’s 19-player roster.

Finally Home: After 24 games over a span of 47 days in eight different locations, Valpo finally opens its home slate this weekend at the Valpo Softball Complex. The April 2 home opener matches last year for the latest home opener since the 2003 campaign. Now, the script flips, as the Beacons are slated to play 13 consecutive home games over nine dates in a 19-day stretch. Should Mother Nature cooperate to allow all the games to be played as scheduled, it would be the longest homestand by number of games since the 2014 team played 14 straight at home.

Running Around: Valpo had a pair of stolen bases last time out at Western Michigan, with Taylor Herschbach swiping her fifth base in as many attempts this year and Lauren Kehlenbrink registering her first career steal. On the season, the Beacons are now 25-for-27 on the basepaths, led by Jaina Westphal’s 6-for-6 performance so far. Skapyak joins Herschbach with five steals on the campaign, while Peyton Moeder has stolen four.

Slowing Down the Opposition: While Valpo has been super-efficient when it comes to stealing bases, it has turned the tables on the opposition when they attempt to run. The Beacons’ opponents this year are just 24-for-38 attempting to steal bases, compared to last year, when opponents were 66-for-80 on the basepaths. Valpo currently ranks third in the conference in caught stealing percentage as a team, led by Addi Weaver, who has thrown out eight of 20 runners attempting to steal on her.

Delivering in the Clutch: To put it simply, when the Beacons picked up hits with runners in scoring position this year, they have won more often than not. So far this year, Valpo is hitting .352 with runners in scoring position in its nine wins, but just .176 in the same situations in its 15 losses. There is a similar, but less pronounced, delineation for the Beacons’ pitching staff as well, as Valpo is allowing opponents to hit just .246 with RISP in wins versus .338 in losses. In the four losses over the last week, Valpo was just 1-for-17 with runners in scoring position.

Solid Outings: Junior pitcher Easton Seib has put together solid performances in the circle in each of her last two starts. Seib allowed just five hits and three runs in both complete-game outings – last Saturday’s nightcap at Missouri State and the midweek game at Western Michigan. Seib, who leads the team in innings pitched, ERA, wins and strikeouts, has surrendered three or fewer earned runs in seven of her 10 starts.

One is Enough: Valpo earned its second 1-0 win of the season with Cheyenne Nietz’s effort in the series finale at Indiana State, as Easton Seib tossed a shutout in a 1-0 win over Charleston earlier this year. Prior to this year, the program’s last 1-0 win had come in April 2018, and the team had last won multiple 1-0 games in the same season in 2013.

Reeling Off Wins: Valpo won each of its first four games at the Charleston Invitational earlier this season en route to posting the tournament’s best record. Combined with the tournament-closing win over Western Michigan on opening weekend, the Beacons won five in a row – the program’s longest winning streak since a six-game winning streak late in the 2018 season. Valpo’s first three wins at Charleston were all by a single run, the first time since late 2013 the program has won three in a row, all by one run.

Valpo to Play Future, Former League Foe on Final Nonconference Weekend

Valparaiso (9-10, 0-0 MVC)

vs. UIC (6-12, 1-2 Horizon)

Friday, April 1, 4:05 p.m. – Curtis Granderson Stadium (Chicago) – Trent Turzenski (R)

Saturday, April 2, Noon (Game 1) – Emory G. Bauer Field – Colin Fields (R)

Saturday, April 2, To Follow (Game 2) – Emory G. Bauer Field – Jake Miller (L)

Next Up in Valpo Baseball: The Valparaiso University baseball team will play its final weekend series prior to the start of Missouri Valley Conference play as the Beacons battle UIC for three this weekend. The series will be split between the two nearby venues as UIC will host the series opener on Friday at Curtis Granderson Stadium before the set shifts to Emory G. Bauer Field for Saturday’s doubleheader. This represents a preview of future MVC series as UIC will join The Valley on July 1.

Last Time Out: After a 2-0 weekend against St. Bonaventure, Valpo incurred an 11-3 midweek setback to Purdue Fort Wayne on a chilly Tuesday at Emory G. Bauer Field. The bulk of the Beacon run production came on one swing of the bat as Ryan Maka lifted his first career home run, a two-run job in the fourth. Adam Brauch finished with three hits, while Nolan Tucker also enjoyed a multi-hit game. Valpo was plagued by three errors and a passed ball in the first two innings alone, leading to four unearned runs for the Mastodons over the first two frames. Seven Valpo hurlers took the mound, including Jacob Rosenkranz and Christian Hack, who each tossed scoreless innings.

Following the Beacons: Friday’s game in the Windy City will air on ESPN+. There will be no video streaming of Saturday’s home doubleheader due to an overlap with a home MVC softball series. Saturday’s twinbill is expected to have radio coverage on WVUR, 95.1 FM Valparaiso. Links to live video, audio and stats are available on 

Head Coach Brian Schmack: Brian Schmack (161-245), the 17th head baseball coach in Valparaiso University history, is in his ninth season in charge of the program. This year, he moves into sole possession of third in program history for number of seasons coached with nine, surpassing Donald Warnke (1946-1953). Entering the season, Schmack’s win total ranks fourth in program history after he surpassed Rick Ferchen (1982-1987, 147) during the 2021 campaign. Also in 2021, Schmack joined Paul Twenge (1988-2006), Emory G. Bauer (1954-1981) and Tracy Woodson (2007-2013) as the only head coaches to reach the 150-win threshold. The former big-league pitcher led Valpo to 25 wins in his inaugural campaign in 2014, a school record for victories by a first-year skipper. Schmack, a member of the 2003 Detroit Tigers, served as pitching coach/associate head coach at Valpo for seven seasons prior to his promotion.

Series Notes: UIC is Valpo’s second-most common all-time opponent as the two schools have faced off 136 times on the baseball diamond. The series is slanted in the Flames’ favor, 75-61. This weekend will be in a nonconference series, but the last and next matchups between these two foes are both conference showdowns. This will be the first battle between the nearby adversaries since May 14, 2017, a doubleheader split at Emory G. Bauer Field in Horizon League play. Valpo’s last trip to Curtis Grandson Stadium was a 6-4 setback to Oakland in the 2017 Horizon League Tournament, Valpo’s last-ever athletic contest in the Horizon League. The next morning, the department announced its plans to join the Missouri Valley Conference.

20-Game Checkpoint: Valpo is off to one of its best starts in recent memory, and a victory in the series opener against the Flames would allow the Beacons to own a .500 record through 20 games. That would represent Valpo’s first .500 or better mark at the 20-game checkpoint since 1998, when the Brown & Gold stood at 10-9-1 through 20 games.

In the Other Dugout: UIC

Coming off a 10-9 upset over Big Ten foe Purdue on Tuesday. The Boilermakers are ranked No. 16 nationally by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper.

UIC is 1-2 against The Valley so far this season, going 1-1 against Evansville and falling at Illinois State.

Under the direction of first-year head coach Sean McDermott, who was promoted to the top spot after serving as part of longtime head coach Mike Dee’s staff for over two decades. Dee announced his retirement over the summer.

Picked second in the Horizon League preseason poll.

Led offensively by Bryan Rosario, who is hitting .344.

Smith Named to NFCA Top 50 List

LOUISVILLE, Ky.—UIndy’s softball ace Kenzee Smith was one of 50 student-athletes from across the country revealed Thursday as part of the 2022 Schutt Sports/NFCA Division II National Player and Pitcher of the Year awards list.

The Player of the Year award was created in 2015 to honor the outstanding athletic achievements among softball student-athletes throughout NCAA Division II. In 2019, the Association expanded the award to include a Player and Pitcher of the Year. The list is compiled and the award is voted on by the elected members of the NFCA Division II All-American Committee with one head coach representing each of the eight NCAA regions.

After crafting the most decorated freshman campaign in program history in 2021, Smith has picked up right where she left in this, her sophomore season. The Indianapolis native ranks highly Division II in a number of statistical categories, including hits allowed per game (9th), strikeouts per game (11th), earned run average (16th) and wins (22nd).

The Top 25 finalists for the 2022 Schutt Sports / NFCA Division II National Player and Pitcher of the Year awards will be announced on May 5. A student-athlete does not have to be on the Top 50 list to be considered for the Top 25. The winner of each award will be announced on June 2, following the conclusion of the 2022 season.

Last season, Smith was dubbed a finalist for the prestigious award, earning a spot on the exclusive Top 15 list. She went on to earn DII Freshman of the Year honors from the NFCA as well as consensus All-America First Team accolades.

Baseball Hosts Anderson in HCAC Opening Doubleheader on Saturday

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology baseball team hosts Anderson University (8-9, 0-0 HCAC) on Saturday at noon in the first Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader of the 2022 season.


* Rose-Hulman stands 9-4 overall and is on a 4-game winning streak entering Saturday’s doubleheader.

* Kade Kline is batting .462 (12-26) with 1 triple and 10 RBIs in 26 at bats this season.

* Adam Taylor has a .346 batting average with 16 runs scored to provide offensive depth.

* Josh Mesenbrink has team-highs for home runs (5), RBIs (19) and slugging average (.778).

* Shane Garner has also added 4 home runs to the lineup.

* Colter Couillard-Rodak adds a .333 batting average with 3 doubles and 1 home run.

* Drew Roberts (.429 on 6-14) and Dalton Busboom (.316, 4 2B) are also over .300 as consistent members of the starting lineup.

* Ian Kline leads the pitching staff with a 3-0 record and a 2.04 ERA.  Kline has 21 strikeouts in 17.2 innings of work.

* Brett Borcherding has added a 2-0 record with 19 strikeouts in 17 innings of work after tossing 6 scoreless innings Sunday vs. IIT.

* Matthew Rouse stands 1-1 with a 0.69 ERA and 6 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched.

* Korey Marlow (1-0, 0.84), Adam Taylor (0.00, 1 save), Paul Durell (0.00, 8 IP) and Schuyler Wilcox (1 save) have added pitching depth.


* Overall Series: Rose-Hulman leads 40-29

* Current Streak: Rose-Hulman won 3

* Last Meeting: RHIT 15, AU 11 on 4/27/2021

Rose-Hulman Softball Travels to Bluffton, Hosts Oberlin This Weekend

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology softball team opens Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play on Saturday at Bluffton with a 1 pm doubleheader.  The Fightin’ Engineers then return home for a non-conference matchup twinbill against Oberlin on Sunday at 1 pm.


* Rose-Hulman stands 11-3 on the season, highlighted by an 8-2 spring trip to Florida.

* Nicole Lang leads the team with a .467 batting average, 9 doubles, 3 home runs and a .911 slugging average.

* Angela Boulboulle (.429, 5 2B, 1 GR) and Ashley Pinkham (.413, 2 2B) are also batting over .400 this season.

* Hailey Hofmann (.385, 1 2B); Ariel Thomasson (.367, 5 2B); MaKenzie Morgan (.333, 4 2B, 1 3B); Phoebe Worstell (.321) and Katie Palmer (.313, 1 2B) are also over the .300 mark.

* Thomasson leads the pitching staff with a 6-1 record, a 1.22 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 46 innings of work.

* Phoebe Worstell threw the 4th no-hitter in Rose-Hulman softball history as part of the spring trip in a 12-1 win over Finlandia.  Worstell is 4-0 with a 2.93 ERA.


* Overall Series: Bluffton leads 19-9

* Current Streak: Rose-Hulman won 1

* Last Meeting: RHIT 8, BU 7 on 4/3/2021


* Overall Series: Oberlin leads 3-2

* Current Streak: Rose-Hulman won 1

* Last Meeting: RHIT 8, OC 3 on 4/16/2017

Tuominen Recognized as One of the Nation’s Best

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Indiana Tech graduate student Emma Tuominen saved her best for last as she was recognized as one of the top players in the nation by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), as she earned Third Team All-America honors.

Tuominen the season establishing herself as one the nation’s best. The Finland native poured in a team best 14.8 points while shooting 55.5 percent from the floor. Not only a scorer for the Warrior squad, she also ripped down 7.5 rebounds and dished out 2.2 assists.

The All-America honors tops a list of accolades Tuominen collected over the course of the season. The 5’8″ guard was voted WHAC Co-Player of the Year, WHAC All-Defensive Team, and was named to the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Honorable Mention list earlier this month. Tuominen was also featured on College Basketball Times and was WHAC Player of the Week this season.

USI’s Fair on NFCA’s Top 50 Player & Pitcher of the Year List

EVANSVILLE, Ind.—University of Southern Indiana Softball sophomore first baseman Lexi Fair (Greenwood, Indiana) has been named to the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division II Player & Pitcher of the Year Top 50 List in an announcement by the National Fastpitch Coaches’ Association Thursday.

Fair, the reigning Great Lakes Valley Conference Player of the Week, is currently hitting .435 with 12 doubles, two triples, four home runs and 30 RBI. She leads USI with a .739 slugging percentage has a .509 on-base percentage in 2022.

On Monday, Fair was named the GLVC Player of the Week after hitting .550 with five doubles, a triple, a home run and 10 RBI to lead the Screaming Eagles to a 6-0 record in league play.

Fair is one of six players from the GLVC and one of eight players from the Midwest Region to find a spot on the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division II Player & Pitcher of the Year Top 50 List.

She was joined from the GLVC by Drury University’s Kristina Bettis, University of Illinois Springfield’s Carly Chovanec, University of indianapolis’s Kenzee Smith, McKendree University’s Kenzee Smith and Lindenwood University’s Amanda Weyh. Grand Valley State University’s Hannah Beatus and Lydia Goble rounded out the Midwest Region’s presence on the list.

USI (22-8, 8-0 GLVC) returns to action Saturday at noon when it hosts Rockhurst University in a GLVC doubleheader at the USI Softball Field.

USI opens GLVC schedule vs. Quincy

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — University of Southern Indiana Baseball opens the 2022 Great Lakes Valley Conference schedule this week when it hosts Quincy University for a four-game series. The series starts Friday with a 6 p.m. single game, continues Saturday with a 2 p.m. doubleheader, and concludes Sunday with a noon finale. 

Throughout the 2022 season, fans can follow the Screaming Eagles all season long on Selected games can be heard on ESPN 97.7FM and 95.7FM The Spin, in addition to live stats, video streams, and audio broadcasts.

USI Baseball Notes:

USI vs. Quincy: The Eagles trail all-time series with the Hawks, 48-41, after splitting six games last spring. USI lost three of four with Quincy at home during the regular season but bounced back to win both meetings in the GLVC Tournament at Lindenwood University.

Eagles in 2022: USI is .500 this spring, going 11-11 in the early non-conference portion of the campaign. The Eagles have stuggled of late, going 4-6 in the last 10 games, but are 5-3 versus ranked opponents.

Quincy in 2022: Quincy is 12-10 overall this spring, 3-1 in the GLVC, after taking three of four from the University of Illinois Springfield at home last weekend. The Hawks are 5-5 in their last 10 outings.

Predicted in the GLVC:  USI was predicted to place third in the GLVC Blue Division, while Quincy was forecast to finish second in the Blue Division.     

Eagle Leaders: USI junior infielder/catcher Lucas McNew (Floyds Knobs, Indiana) leads the Eagles with a .364 batting average; nine doubles; four home runs; and 32 RBIs. He also is third on the team with 20 runs scored. Senior shortstop Ethan Hunter (Terre Haute, Indiana) follows McNew with a .348 batting average, two home runs, and 19 RBIs. 

On the mound, senior right-hander Brice Stuteville (Rockport, Indiana) has a team-best three wins each. Junior left-hander Sammy Barnett (Sellersburg, Indiana) has a team-best 1.54 ERA in five appearances and two starts. 

Hunter all-time at USI: USI senior infielder Ethan Hunter continues to move up the all-time lists for USI. Hunter ranks first in triples (16); 11th total bases (318); 12th in RBIs (133) and tied for 13th in home runs (16); tied for eighth in runs scored (154); 11th in hits (208); and 21st in doubles (30).

McNew all-time at USI: Junior infielder/catcher Lucas McNew is starting his move up the all-time rankings at USI. He is tied for 19th in doubles (33); tied for 13th in home runs (16); and 21st in RBIs (101). 

Archuleta at USI: USI Head Coach Tracy Archuleta is in his 16th season at the helm of the Screaming Eagles. He has a USI record of 517-296 during his 16 season and has a 19-year record of 665-420 (5 years University of Wisconsin-Parkside; 16 years USI).

Trailblazers add Kentucky/Ohio All-Star forward to 2022 recruiting class

VINCENNES, Ind. – The Vincennes University men’s basketball team continues to add to their 2022 recruiting class with the signing of six-foot-seven, 225-pound forward Victor Lado Thursday afternoon.

Lado comes to Vincennes University after leading Pleasure Ridge Park High School in Louisville to the 2022 21st District Championship.

“We are very excited about Victor,” VU Hall of Fame Head Coach Todd Franklin said. “He brings size and length. He’s got very good pop off the floor going straight up, where we can dump the ball off to him for dunks or he could block shots. He also has a developing ability to be able to pick and pop and be able to hit some threes, which gives him a unique quality as a big.”

Lado averaged 14.1 points and 7.3 rebounds per game last season for the Panthers under head coach Larry Kihnley and shot an impressive 64-percent from the field, 38-percent from three-point range and 74-percent from the free throw line.

Lado was named to the All-District and All-Region teams and was named a Kentucky/Ohio All-Star, after guiding the Panthers to a 23-7 record this past season.

Lado most recently scored a team-high 23 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in the 6th, 7th Region All-Star Game Saturday.

For his career, Lado scored 659 points and grabbed 334 rebounds over his three-year career and has averaged 13.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game in his final two seasons at PRP.

“Victor comes from a winning program at PRP and by all accounts is supposed to be an outstanding guy,” Franklin added. “That’s what we’ve seen when we’ve dealt with him. He’s a young man that is still improving. He was an All-District, All-Region player this year in a very tough Region, probably the best Region in the state of Kentucky.”

“Then you add on that he was the leading scorer and leading rebounder in the Louisville Region All-Star game. He’s gotten much bigger in the last year; he’s gone from 205 to 225 and he’s young. He just turned 18 at the end of January and a lot of these guys coming out of high school now are 19, sometimes getting close to 20. He’s a young guy that could keep developing and we are excited about what he could become.”

“He will be able to come up and be with us over the summer, which is an added bonus. So he will get a chance to be with the guys and get some summer classes and develop and give him a much better chance of hitting the ground running in the fall.”

The Vincennes University Athletic Department is excited to welcome Victor to the 2022 Trailblazer recruiting class.


1914       Rube Waddell, a southpaw who once struck out a record 349 batters in one season, dies of tuberculosis at 37. The eccentric Hall of Famer compiled a 193-143 (.574) record and a 2.16 ERA during his 13 seasons with the Colonels, A’s, Pirates, and Browns.

1937       The Reds sell Babe Herman to the Tigers. The 34 year-old outfielder, batting .300 for his new team, will appear in only 17 contests with Detroit before effectively retiring from the game, although he will return to play briefly for the war-time Dodgers in 1945.

1938       Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis, not a fan of Branch Rickey’s farm system, grants free agency to a group of nine Cardinal minor leaguers that includes talented prospect Pete Reiser. A reported gentlemen’s agreement that has Brooklyn signing and hiding the 19-year-old outfielder in the minors for a trade back to St. Louis fails when Leo Durocher disobeys orders, allowing the phenom to display his incredible ability in spring training exhibition games.

1950       At Gilmore Field, the Pacific Coast League Hollywood Stars unveil their new look, wearing shorts and rayon shirts on Opening Day. The team plans to wear the new track-suit-styled uniforms during day games and warm night contests. In 1976, the White Sox will also don shorts in the first game of a doubleheader against Kansas City.

1962       Dave DeBusschere, a hoop star at the University of Detroit, signs with the White Sox as a pitcher. The 21-year-old right-hander will compile a 3-4 record in 36 appearances with Chicago before moving to the National Basketball Association, becoming one of the 50 named greatest players in the league’s history.

1963       Former Brooklyn Dodger Duke Snider returns to New York when the Mets purchase him from LA for $40,000. The 36 year-old outfielder, who will represent New York in the All-Star Game, will be told at the end of the season by Buzzi Bavasi, his former GM, that the Yankees had asked for him to back up Mickey Mantle before he was dealt to the team the across the river.

1964       During spring training in Tucson (AZ), Indians’ manager Birdie Tebbetts suffers a heart attack. George Strickland will fill in for three months until the 51-year-old skipper returns to the Indians dugout with limited duties, resigning from the team two seasons later on August 19, again replaced by his third base coach.

1968       The Braves purchase Orioles right-handed reliever Stu Miller, best remembered for committing a balk in the 1961 All-Star Game when a gust of wind pushed him off the mound at Candlestick Park. The 40-year-old Northampton (MA) native will throw only 1.2 innings in two appearances for Atlanta before retiring from baseball, having compiled a 105-103 record and 153 saves during his 16-year major league tenure with five teams.

1969       After acquiring Lou Piniella from the Indians in the expansion draft, the Seattle Pilots trade him to the Royals in exchange for Steve Whitaker and John Gelnar. The 25-year-old outfielder will have a stellar season in Kansas City, copping the league’s Rookie of the Year Award.

1970       Federal Bankruptcy Referee Sidney Volinn, after ruling the team is insolvent, orders the Seattle Pilots be sold to a group headed by mid-western businessman Bud Selig. The American League expansion team’s tenure in the Northwest is over after just one season when the club is hastily moved to Milwaukee to start the new season as the Brewers.

1976       After being released by the Padres, Bobby Tolan (.255, 5, 48), signs as a free agent with the Phillies. The outfielder-first baseman, who plays only 15 games for Philadelphia, will ink a deal with the Pirates in June.

1982       The Mets send fan-favorite Lee Mazzilli to Texas for rookie starters Ron Darling and Walt Terrell. This deal isn’t well-received at the time, but the trade turns out to be a steal for New York when the two right-handers combine for 118 victories during their tenure with the team, and their departed outfielder plays a total of 58 games with Texas before being traded to the Yankees in August for Bucky Dent.

1987       The Pirates trade Tony Pena, a three-time Gold Glove catcher, to the Cardinals in exchange for three youngsters, Mike LaValliere, Mike Dunne, and Andy Van Slyke, who thinks the deal is an April Fool’s Day joke. The former Pittsburgh backstop cries at a news conference with Bucs’ skipper Jim Leyland announces the swap with the Redbirds.

1987       Mets phenom pitcher Dwight Gooden avoids suspension for substance abuse by agreeing to enter a drug rehab facility. The talented 22-year-old right-hander will make his first start on June 5 and wins 15 games for the team despite missing the first two months of the season.

1989       Former Yale University and National League president Bart Giamatti becomes the seventh commissioner of major league baseball. Baseball’s new leader, a lifelong Red Sox fan, is the author of The Green Fields of the Mind, an essay which laments the end of a season in Boston.

1996       The postponement of Cincinnati’s Opening Day game becomes necessary after home plate ump John McSherry, working his 26th season in the major leagues, suffers a fatal heart attack after calling the first seven pitches of the contest. The death of the respected, but noticeably overweight veteran arbitrator, prompts Major League Baseball to compel its umpires to be more physically fit.

1996       The Mets rally overcome a 6-0 deficit, beating the Cardinals at Shea Stadium, 7-6, in the century’s biggest Opening Day comeback. The decisive run scores due to an unusual 9-3-6-3-6 double play when Bernard Gilkey, the baserunner on first, is doubled up on Rico Brogna’s short sac fly to right field (RF-1B-SS-1B-SS), allowing Lance Johnson to cross home plate on the play.

1996       Only 7,296 fans show up at Cashman Field to watch the A’s lose their season opener to the Blue Jays, 9-6. Due to the renovations at the Oakland Coliseum, the first six home games take place in Las Vegas, marking the first time since the White Sox participated in 11 home contests in Milwaukee’s County Stadium in 1969 that a major league game takes place in a neutral site.

1997       Setting a record for the most runs scored in one inning of an Opening Day contest this century, the Padres score 11 runs in the bottom of the sixth inning en route to a 12-5 rout of the Mets. Chris Gomez, Rickey Henderson, and Quilvio Veras lead the attack with back-to-back-to-back home runs.

1998       At Camden Yards, the Orioles rock the Royals, 10-1, as Scott Erickson records his 100th major league victory. O’s skipper Ray Miller, who hadn’t won a game since managing the Twins in 1986, enjoys his first win with Baltimore.

2001       In the first major league game ever played in Puerto Rico, the Blue Jays defeat the Rangers, 8-1, in the major league season opener. In his debut with Texas, $252 million shortstop Alex Rodriguez collects the season’s first hit and first run, but he makes a throwing error on his first chance in the field.

2002       Cinci Freedom, who evaded capture for ten days after jumping a six-foot fence to avoid slaughter, is excused from her scheduled appearance in the Reds’ traditional Opening Day parade. Before the Reds’ 5-4 walk-off victory over the Cubs at Cinergy Field, the Charolais cow is deemed too jumpy to participate in the Findlay Market activities after receiving a key to the city.

2002       The Mets, with a 6-2 victory over the Bucs at Shea Stadium, improve their mark for Opening Day victories to 26-15 (.634), a major league record. The New York expansion team didn’t win their first season opener until the ninth year of the franchise’s existence.

2005       Albert Pujols does not strike out in any of the 21 Cardinals spring training games. In his 68 plate appearances, the St. Louis first baseman finishes the exhibition season with a .458 batting average, six homers, and 20 RBI.

2006       A day before the start of the season, the White Sox ink Jose Contreras (15-7, 3.61) to a $29 million, three-year contract extension. The 34 year-old Cuban native was the World Champs’ most effective pitcher during the team’s stretch run to the AL pennant, posting an 11-2 mark following the All-Star Game.

2008       With two outs in the 10th inning, Robert Andino’s first career round-tripper is a memorable one as his walk-off homer to deep left off Matt Wise gives the Marlins a 5-4 victory over the Mets at Dolphin Stadium. The post-game celebration is short-lived when the Miami native takes off for home to meet the police after getting a text message from his wife informing him their house may have an intruder.

2008       On Opening Day in Los Angeles, Juan Pierre’s 434 consecutive game streak, the longest current one in the major leagues, comes to an end when the Dodger outfielder does not play in the 3-2 victory over the Giants. New skipper Joe Torre plays Andre Ethier in left field in place of the highly paid but light-hitting fly chaser.

2009       After tallying a run in the top of the first, Kentucky State finds itself on the short end of a 22-1 score. The Eastern Kentucky University Colonels score 27 more times in the next three frames, prompting the decision to halt the contest in the middle of the fifth, giving EKU a 49-1 triumph over the Thorobreds.

2011       Doug Glanville becomes a baseball color analyst for ESPN, the network where he has contributed to the Baseball Tonight television show,, and ESPN – The Magazine. The former major league outfielder, best known for his playing days with the Phillies, is also a guest columnist for the New York Times, where he writes about sports culture.

2013       On Opening Day, Jackie Bradley Jr. makes a memorable major league debut, walking three times, scoring twice, and robbing Robinson Cano of an extra-base hit with an outstanding defensive play in the Red Sox’ 8-2 victory over New York at Yankee Stadium. The 22-year-old Boston rookie outfielder, called JBJ by his teammates, also makes uniform history, becoming the first major leaguer to wear “Jr.” on the back of his jersey.

2013       Bryce Harper, providing all of the offense the Nationals will need, becomes the youngest player to homer twice on Opening Day. The 20-year-old outfielder, playing in his first Opening Day as a major leaguer, hits solo shots in the first and fourth frames in Washington’s 2-0 victory over Miami.

2013       Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino, who will end the day with an 0-1 record when he gives up a walk-off sac fly in an Opening Day loss to Milwaukee, becomes the first big league pitcher to wear the number 0, joining position players Oddibe McDowell (1985-88), Junior Ortiz (1989-2004), and Al Oliver (1978-85). Several players, including hurlers, including Bobo Newsome (1943), Curtis Leskanic (2000-01), Rick White (2005-06), and Brian Wilson (2003-14), have donned a double-zero.

2013       Clayton Kershaw, the Dodgers’ Opening Day pitcher, hits a leadoff home run off San Francisco’s George Kontos in the bottom of the eighth inning to break up a scoreless tie in the team’s eventual 4-0 victory. LA’s 25-year-old southpaw retires the side in the next frame, completing a 4-0 complete-game shutout against the Giants at Chavez Ravine.

2015       Auction items featured in Sotheby’s “New York Sale” include the 1967 Mets’ bullpen cart, which is shaped like a baseball wearing a cap. The electric-powered vehicle, valued between $20,000 and $30,000, fetches a surprising high bid of $125,000.

2018       In his much-anticipated pitching debut, Shohei Ohtani, striking out six batters in six innings while allowing three runs, picks up his first big league win when the Angels beat the A’s at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, 7-4. The 23-year-old Japanese sensation, also touted for his prowess as a hitter, does not have a plate appearance in the American League contest.

2021       In the longest nine-inning game in franchise history, the Royals set a club record for runs scored on Opening Day, beating the Rangers at Kauffman Stadium, 14-10. The total of Kansas City players crossing the plate in the four-hour and 26-minute contest surpasses the team’s 11 tallies against Toronto in 1979.




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MILWAUKEE4828.6320.526-1222-1610-330-187-32 W
BOSTON4730.6102.026-1321-179-730-187-32 L
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TORONTO4432.5794.521-1623-169-527-208-24 W
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BROOKLYN4037.5199.017-2123-169-628-206-41 L
CHARLOTTE4037.5199.020-1920-186-724-238-21 W
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15 ORLANDO2057.26029.010-2710-302-1210-373-74 L
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2 XY-MEMPHIS5423.7018.528-1026-1310-534-149-16 W
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GOLDEN STATE4829.62314.529-1019-1910-428-193-74 L
UTAH4631.59716.527-1119-2013-130-174-61 W
DENVER4631.59716.522-1524-166-927-206-43 W
MINNESOTA4334.55819.525-1318-2111-429-205-52 L
LA CLIPPERS3740.48125.521-1616-247-722-263-71 L
NEW ORLEANS3343.43429.018-2115-226-922-246-42 W
10 SAN ANTONIO3145.40831.014-2417-216-921-256-41 L
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14 OKLAHOMA CITY2254.28940.010-2812-265-915-322-81 L
15 HOUSTON2057.26042.511-279-303-1311-393-72 L




FLORIDA PANTHERS6746156984327519528-6-018-9-67-2-1
CAROLINA HURRICANES6845158984422916125-5-420-10-44-3-3
NEW YORK RANGERS6844195934021117822-6-322-13-28-2-0
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