May 4, 2010
Site: Kalamazoo, Mich. (Hyames Field)
Score: Michigan 9, Western Michigan 8
Records: U-M (28-15), Western Michigan (10-33)
Next U-M Event: Friday, May 7 -- at Minnesota (Minneapolis, Minn.), 6:35 p.m. CDT
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Senior first baseman Mike Dufek (Scottsdale, Ariz./Desert Mountain) hit a solo home run in the second inning and a grand slam in the fourth to help push the University of Michigan baseball team to a 9-8 victory at Western Michigan on Tuesday afternoon (May 4) on Hyames Field at Robert J. Bobb Stadium.
Dufek paced the Wolverines during a 2-for-4 day with his home runs and five runs batted in. Fifth-year senior rightfielder Nick Urban (Whitehall, Mich./Whitehall) was 2-for-4 with a pair of stolen bases and two runs batted in.
Junior pitcher Kolby Wood (Eau Claire, Mich./Berrien Springs) earned the victory out of the bullpen, striking out two while allowing three hits in three innings of work. Junior pitcher Matt Gerbe (Shelby Township, Mich./Eisenhower) picked up his second save of the season, tossing the final two innings.
Senior/junior second baseman Anthony Toth (Lorain, Ohio/St. Ignatius) flashed the leather in the first inning, laying out on hot shot up the middle and flipping to freshman shortstop Derek Dennis (Ada, Mich./Forest Hills Central), who turned the inning-ending double play. The web gem stifled a WMU threat and contained the first-inning damage at one run. Dufek briefly erased the deficit with a home run to rightfield before WMU retook the lead in the home half of the inning with a pair of scores.
Dufek launched the U-M comeback in the fourth inning with a grand slam to put the Maize and Blue ahead, 6-3. Toth and junior centerfielder Ryan LaMarre (Jackson, Mich./Lumen Christi) each singled and stole a base to start the inning before back-to-back walks pushed a run across. With the bases loaded, Dufek took a 2-1 pitch and deposited it just inside the leftfield foul pole for the grand slam. WMU nullified the lead in the fifth inning, however, putting three runs on the board to tie the game at 6-6.
The Wolverines once again reclaimed the lead in the sixth inning, going ahead 8-6. Sophomore catcher Coley Crank (Pinole, Calif./Pinole Valley) put the Maize and Blue back on top when a fly to deep leftfield danced around in the wind before alluding the leftfielder's grip, allowing senior designated hitter/catcher Chris Berset (Vienna, Va./Heights School) to score. With Crank 90 feet from home two batters later, Urban laced a ball past a diving WMU third baseman and into leftfield for the run-scoring hit. Urban was once again called upon to give the Wolverines an insurance run in the seventh after their lead shrunk to 8-7. He deposited a high fly ball between three Broncos fielders in shallow centerfield, scoring junior/sophomore pinch hitter Garrett Stephens (Davison, Mich./Davison) from second base.
After putting the winning runner on base, Gerbe struck out the final batter of the game to preserve the victory.
The Wolverines continue their road swing this weekend (Fri-Sun., May 7-9) at Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minn. The first game of the series is slated for 6:35 p.m. CDT with live audio available on MGoBlue.com All-Access.
Contact: Ryan Sosin (734) 763-4423