Wolverines Corral the Herd for Win in Season Opener
Nicole Sappingfield

Feb. 8, 2013

Box Score

Site: Tampa, Fla. (USF Softball Stadium)
Event: USF Tournament
Scores: #15 Michigan 6, Marshall 1
Records: U-M (1-0), Marshall (0-1)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Feb. 9 -- vs. Florida Atlantic - USF Tournament (Tampa, Fla.), 11:15 a.m.

TAMPA, Fla. -- Behind a three-hit, 10-strikeout complete-game effort from sophomore Sara Driesenga (Hudsonville, Mich./Hudsonville) and five runs scored with two outs, the No. 15-ranked University of Michigan softball team took down Marshall, 6-1, today (Friday, Feb. 8) at the USF Tournament held at the USF Softball Stadium.

Driesenga went all seven innings, striking out a career-best 10 hitters while only walking one. The righty was perfect until the fifth inning when Marshall collected its first hit on a double. Later that inning, Marshall's lone run came on a throwing error.

Driesenga struck out one batter in every inning except the fourth, including striking out the side in the third inning, with all three Marshall batters going down swinging. It marks the second straight year that Driesenga got the win on opening day.

The Michigan offense scored its first run in the bottom of the first without a hit. Junior Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community) walked and then stole second. She moved to third on an illegal pitch and eventually scored on an illegal pitch. U-M strung together three hits in the next inning to plate a run.

Two-out hitting sparked Michigan's offense late in the game. Junior Nicole Sappingfield (Norco, Calif./Norco) opened the bottom of the fifth with a triple into centerfield. Driesenga walked, and senior Jaclyn Crummey (Macomb, Mich./Dakota) came in to pinch run. With two outs and a 1-2 count, junior Taylor Hasselbach (Clarkston, Mich./Clarkston) punched one past the pitcher and beat the throw to first, scoring Sappingfield and Crummey to put Michigan up 4-1.

In Michigan's half of the sixth, Marshall retired the first two Wolverine batters. Then leadoff hitter Doyle singled and stole her second bag of the game. Sappingfield walked to put runners at first and second. Freshman Sierra Romero (Murrieta, Calif./Vista Murrieta) then drilled a pitch off the leftfield wall for a two-run double. It was her first collegiate hit and increased Michigan's lead to 6-1.

Romero and fellow freshman Sierra Lawrence (Norcross, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian) both made their collegiate debuts and each collected their first collegiate hit. Sappingfield went 2-for-2, including her triple, walked twice, knocked in a run and scored two runs. Doyle also had two hits and scored twice.

Michigan continues play in the USF Tournament on Saturday (Feb. 9) against Florida Atlantic at 11:15 a.m. and against No. 12 USF at 4 p.m.


Michigan Head Coach Carol Hutchins
On what she saw in the season opener ... "I didn't think we were our best, but I thought Sara (Driesenga) had a great effort on the mound; I was pleased with that. Really it's a matter of getting our feet under us and starting to compete because we've been practicing. We need to just play and enjoy the game and trust our game."

On Driesenga's complete-game win ... "I just liked that she was consistent and was able to get ahead of the hitters and that she kept her focus pitch-to-pitch. She just kept moving forward and was playing good one-pitch softball."

On the offensive production ... "You have to look at (Lyndsay) Doyle and (Nicole) Sappingfield, they set the table all day. Even when we weren't able to push them through, they were consistent. We need to attack, and bottom line is that everyone needs to do their part and trust their game."

On tomorrow's doubleheader against Florida Atlantic and USF... "We're only going to focus on the first game. I'm a big advocate, play one pitch at a time, and a two-game day is a great way to practice that."


• Michigan is now 2-0 all-time against Marshall. The last meeting came on March 7, 1997 (6-2 Michigan win).

• U-M has not lost its season opener since a 7-6 loss to Baylor on Feb. 12, 2005.

Lyndsay Doyle stole two bases in a game for the first time in her career.

Nicole Sappingfield hit the third triple of her career.

Sara Driesenga doubled her previous high mark in strikeouts. She tallied five against St. Louis March 10, 2012.

Contact: Michael Kasiborski (734) 763-4423

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