Feb. 12, 2012
Site: Baton Rouge, La. (Tiger Park)
Event: Tiger Classic
Scores: #15 Michigan 12, Penn State 1 (5 inn.)
Records: U-M (4-0), Penn State (1-3)
Next U-M Event: Friday, Feb. 17 -- vs. Maryland - Florida Atlantic Kickoff Classic (Boca Raton, Fla.), 11 a.m.
BATON ROUGE, La. -- The No. 15-ranked University of Michigan softball team used 12 hits, including back-to-back home runs from senior third baseman Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich./Cabrini) and junior second baseman Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido), for a 12-1 victory in five innings over Penn State in the finale of the Tiger Classic on on Sunday (Feb. 12) at Tiger Park. Michigan went 4-0 on the weekend to win the tournament.
Freshman LHP Haylie Wagner (Orange, Calif./El Modena) went the distance in her first career start, giving up three hits and one earned run while totaling 11 strikeouts. Senior centerfielder Bree Evans (Bloomington, Calif./Rialto) and senior shortstop Stephanie Kirkpatrick (Plainfield, Ill./Central) each tallied two hits each as eight Wolverines collected hits in the contest.
U-M put up three runs in the first inning, taking advantage of two Penn State errors and a Kirkpatrick two-run single through the right side. Evans reached on a single to the pitcher to start the game, followed by sophomore outfielder Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community) reaching on a fielding error by the Penn State shortstop and sophomore outfielder Nicole Sappingfield (Norco, Calif./Norco) putting the bunt down to advance the runners. Chidester chopped one to the shortstop who tried to hold Evans at third, but her throw to first base was wide, allowing Evans to score. Kirkpatrick followed with a hard-hit ball between the first and second baseman to plate Doyle and Chidester.
The Wolverines tacked on another two runs in the second, as Wagner kicked off the inning with a single up the middle. Sophomore first baseman Taylor Hasselbach (Clarkston, Mich./Clarkston) looped one into right-center during the next at-bat before both runners advanced on a wild pitch. Doyle singled to the third baseman to score the pinch runner junior outfielder Jaclyn Crummey (Macomb, Mich./Dakota) and Sappingfield singled up the middle as Michigan took a 5-0 lead when Hasselbach crossed the plate.
With runners on first and second for Michigan after a leadoff single and a walk in the fourth inning, Chidester homered to centerfield to score Evans and Sappingfield. The Maize and Blue added another run during the next at-bat when Lane homered to left-center, increasing U-M's lead to 9-0.
Michigan added its final three runs of the day when Chidester and Lane drew back-to-back bases-loaded walks in the fifth inning. Kirkpatrick followed with a single to left, scoring Doyle for U-M's 12th run of the contest.
The Nittany Lions scored a run in the fifth inning, providing the final margin of 12-1.
The Wolverines are back in action next weekend (Feb. 17-19) at the Florida Atlantic Kickoff in Boca Raton, Fla. First up for U-M is Maryland on Friday (Feb. 17) at 11 a.m.
N O T E S
Haylie Wagner's 11 strikeouts are the most by a Wolverine pitcher this season.
Today's game did not count as a conference game.
Stephanie Kirkpatrick stole second base in the first inning, marking the first stolen base for the Wolverines this season.
Today's game was Michigan's first five-inning game of the season.
Q U OT E S
Michigan Head Coach Carol Hutchins
On the weekend as a whole ... "I said to the kids after this last game, our goal was to be a better team on Sunday than we were on Friday. I thought that we did a really nice job with that. Everyone did a nice job of doing their part all weekend. That is a big theme for us this year, doing your part to help Michigan win. Those were our goals coming into the weekend and we did a nice job with them."
On the pitching staff ... "I was very pleased with Sara (Driesenga) and Haylie's (Wagner) improvement over the course of the weekend. They still have a lot of work to do, but their attitude and openness to improve is great. They are both very coachable."
On playing three one-run games ... "We had to work hard to win those one-run games we had this weekend. You want to win the close ones. Hopefully it is a confidence builder for us moving forward. We played some good teams down here; Louisiana Tech was a very feisty team that just never gave up against us. We need to continue to improve, which is the downside of being 4-0. We have to convince ourselves that there is still work to be done."
On the offensive versatility ... "You look at us in our first win against Louisiana Tech, our top three hitters (Amanda Chidester, Ashley Lane, Bree Evans) didn't hit. I like our offensive capability. We have more than nine kids that can hit, and it makes it more challenging to fill out a lineup because I can't put everyone in. Whatever we gave them, they went with it. It is a good problem to have."
Contact: Sarah VanMetre (734) 763-4423