GardnerJeff Gardner gives thanks for still another home run, a shot over the right field fence in the University of Louisville’s 12-4 win over Pittsburgh Friday. His three-run blast in the third inning propelled the Cardinals to a 6-1 lead. He followed up with a 370-foot drive to right center in the fifth inning, his third home run in two games and his ninth for the season.

The win, witnessed by 3,574 fans at Jim Patterson Stadium, assured UofL of a share for first place in the Big East Conference and the No. 1 seed in the next week’s conference tournament.

No celebrating Friday, however. This team wants sole ownership for the Big East Championship. The teams meet again Saturday at Noon.

Stay tuned for a dog pile.

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Meanwhile over at Dan Ulmer Stadium, the UofL softball team was advancing to the second round of the NCAA tournament with a hard-fought 2-1 win over a strong Indiana-Purdue at Fort Wayne team. The women will meet Alabama-Birmingham at 2 p.m. Saturday in the second round of the double-elimination tournament.

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By Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.