Chidester's Walk-Off Homer Seals Michigan's Perfect Day at LSU Classic
Sara Driesenga

Feb. 11, 2012

• Boxscores: LSU | Louisiana Tech
• Photo Galleries: LSU  | Louisiana Tech

Site: Baton Rouge, La. (Tiger Park)
Event: Tiger Classic
Scores: #15 Michigan 2, #22 LSU 1; #15 Michigan 5, Louisiana Tech 4
Records: U-M (3-0), LSU (0-2), Louisiana Tech (1-2)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, Feb. 12 -- vs. Penn State - Tiger Classic (Baton Rouge, La.), 10 a.m. CST

BATON ROUGE, La. -- After the Wolverines doubled up No. 22 LSU, 2-1, to start the day, senior third baseman Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich./Cabrini) hit a walk-off solo home run to centerfield to seal the No. 15-ranked University of Michigan softball team's 5-4 win over Louisiana Tech and complete a 2-0 day of action at the Tiger Classic on Saturday (Feb. 11) at Tiger Park.

Chidester had been held hitless on the season before going 3-for-4 with three runs batted in and two runs scored against Louisiana Tech in the nightcap. Sophomore first baseman Taylor Hasselbach (Clarkston, Mich./Clarkston) knocked out her second home run of the season against Tech, going 1-for-2 in the day's second contest. Freshman LHP Haylie Wagner (Orange, Calif./El Modena) grabbed her first win of the season, pitching 2.1 innings of relief, giving up one run on one hit with two strikeouts.

After Louisiana Tech scored an unearned run in the top of the first, Michigan responded with two runs in the bottom half of the inning. U-M pushed across two runs on back-to-back RBI singles from Chidester and junior second baseman Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido) to take a 2-1 lead after the first frame.

Tech answered back with another run in the second inning to knot the score at 2-2. Michigan loaded the bases in third inning with three consecutive singles. After one out, freshman Lauren Sweet 's (Corona, Calif./Santiago) fielder's choice to left allowed the Maize and Blue to regain a 3-2 lead.

Louisiana Tech once again tied the game at 3-3 with a run in the fifth. Hasselbach's home run in the sixth to right-center gave the Wolverines a cushion heading into the seventh, but Louisiana Tech drew a walk to start the inning, advancing to third after a sacrifice and a wild pitch. A sacrifice fly to center allowed the tying run to cross the plate, setting up Chidester's heroics in the bottom half of the inning.

In the first contest of the day, freshman RHP Sara Driesenga (Hudsonville, Mich./Hudsonville) carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning, earning the win while scattering just three hits with two strikeouts. Senior centerfielder Bree Evans (Bloomington, Calif./Rialto) and sophomore outfielder Nicole Sappingfield (Norco, Calif./Norco) each tallied three of U-M's 11 hits in the contest.

Michigan put up a run in the first inning against the Tigers, as the leadoff hitter Evans singled through the left side on the first pitch of the game. Evans scored when Lane ripped a double down the leftfield line to give Michigan a 1-0 lead.

With two down for Michigan in the sixth, Sweet took the first pitch over the rightfield wall for her first career home run to increase Michigan's lead to 2-0.

LSU recorded its first hit of the contest to break up the no-hitter with a bunt single to start the sixth. The Tigers plated a run in the frame, using a single up the middle to cut the Michigan advantage to 2-1. With runners at second and third with just one out, the Wolverines chose to intentionally walk Ashley Langoni for the second time. She swung, however, at the third pitch, grounding out to Driesenga. Chidester recorded the final out of the inning, snagging a line drive down the third base line.

The Maize and Blue loaded the bases with one out on three straight hits from Evans, sophomore outfielder Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community) and Sappingfield, but Chidester struck out looking and Lane grounded into a fielder's choice to end the top of the seventh inning with Michigan clinging to a 2-1 lead.

LSU earned a walk to start the seventh inning with the runner advancing to second a sacrifice bunt. A line out to senior shortstop Stephanie Kirkpatrick (Plainfield, Ill./Central) at shortstop and a groundout to Driesenga in the circle ended the LSU threat, sealing Michigan's 2-1 victory.

The Wolverines wrap up the weekend tomorrow (Sunday, Feb. 12) with a 10 a.m. CST contest against Penn State.


Mandy Gardner made her first start of the season at first base against LSU. Caitlin Blanchard (catcher) and RHP Stephanie Speierman (pitcher) each earned their first start against Louisiana Tech.

• U-M now leads the all-time series against LSU, 5-1, and 2-0 versus Louisiana Tech.

• RHP Sara Driesenga recorded the first strikeout of her career against LSU. She finished with two against the Tigers.

Lauren Sweet hit the first home run of her career, the deciding run in Michigan's win over LSU. She is the second Wolverine to hit the first home run of her career this weekend (Taylor Hasselbach).

• No. 22 LSU was Michigan's first ranked opponent of the season.

Contact: Sarah VanMetre (734) 763-4423

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