May 3, 1998
Baseball Completes Four-Game Sweep of Iowa
Mike Stritch Now Batting .401 on the Season
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Senior left fielder Mike Stritch (Chicago, Ill./Brother Rice) went 3-for-5 with a double, homer and two RBIs as the Wildcats completed a four-game sweep of the Iowa Hawkeyes in Iowa City, winning 8-1 on Sunday. It is the first four-game conference sweep for NU since taking four games at home vs. Penn State in 1993. NU improves to 25-23, 9-15 Big Ten, while Iowa drops to 17-26, 9-15 Big Ten.
The Hawkeyes took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first off NU starter Chris Hargan. However, NU roared back with two runs in the top of the second on an RBI single by Joe Hietpas and an RBI double by Jeremy Kurella. The ‘Cats added a run in the top of the third on a solo homer by Stritch, his seventh of the season. It also marked his 200th career hit as a Wildcat. NU put the game away with three runs in the sixth inning and two more in the top of the ninth for the 8-1 victory.
Hargan went the distance for the Wildcats, allowing just one run and six hits to improve his record to 4-4 on the season. Offensively, in addition to Stritch, second baseman Ollie Dunn went 4-for-5 with a double and two runs scored. Hietpas, Brian Baron and J.P. Williamson each went 2-for-5, with Williamson extending his hitting streak to seven games.
The Wildcats close out the 1998 season with five home games this week. NU hosts North Central on Tuesday (3 p.m), followed by a weekend series against Minnesota. The ‘Cats also travel to Valparaiso on Wednesday.
Other NU NotesStritch is now hitting .401 for the season (65-for-162). He will attempt to become just the fifth player in school history to hit .400 in a season. The last to do so was Mark Loretta, who hit .408 in 1993. Loretta now plays for the Milwaukee Brewers.
Stritch currently ranks second on NU’s all-time home run chart with 31 and third in career RBIs with 143. He needs two RBIs to move into second place and is six homers shy of a school record. Also, his 17 doubles this season is tied for the fifth-most in NU history.
Junior pitcher John Seaman (Winnetka, Ill./New Trier) earned his ninth win of the season in the 18-0 shutout on Saturday. He is just the ninth player in Wildcat history to record nine victories in a season.