Notre Dame senior Matt Edwards continued his red-hot hitting on Tuesday going 3-for-3, with three home runs, and 6 RBI to lead the Irish to a 9-5 victory over Western Michigan.
The Irish started the game with freshman Wade Korpi (2-0) on the mound. The Lake Worth, Fla. native gave the Irish five strong innings on Tuesday, allowing three runs, and only two walks.
With the wind blowing out to left, Korpi essentially made one bad pitch, his first pitch to Western Michigan centerfielder Tony Scheffler in the fourth inning, who got under the Korpi pitch and watched it sail over the left field wall for a three-run homer.
"I thought Wade Korpi was phenomenal tonight. I really did," said Mainieri of the freshman's performance. "I thought he did a great job. That was the Wade Korpi that we recruited as a first-team, all-state player from Florida that went 10-0 as a senior.
"I thought he changed speeds great. I thought he got ahead of the hitters. In all honesty, the three-run homer he gave up was extremely cheap. It was a one-handed swing and the wind just blew it out of the park. I thought Korpi really competed.
But it was the Edwards performance that was the story of the game. Edwards hit his first homer in the bottom of the first—a solo shot. He added a two-run homer in the third, but saved his best for last, with a three-run blast in the seventh down the left field line—and it was a monster shot!
"Wasn't that something? You can watch a lot games in baseball and not see a guy be locked in that way," Mainieri said of Edward's night at the plate.
"The first one probably was a little bit aided by the wind. The second one was a rocket. That last one, he could've hit that one out of the Grand Canyon," said Manieri of the three homers hit by the senior.
"He's been swinging the bat good all year. He's clearly been our most valuable player, and we need him to stay hot all year.
"He's a senior, he's experienced, he's had a great career here. Now he's the man. There's no Macri, no Sollmann, none of those guys around. Matt's the guy, and he knows it, and he's locked in."
The Irish will back it at tomorrow night with a game against Chicago State at Frank Eck Stadium. The game is set to begin at 5:05 PM EST.