Michigan Takes Game Three for Sweep of Indiana
Kelly Christner

March 22, 2014

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Site: Wilpon Complex (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Score: #6 Michigan 12, Indiana 3 (6 inn.)
Records: U-M (22-6, 3-0 Big Ten), IU (8-21-1, 0-3 Big Ten)
Next U-M Game: Tuesday, March 25 -- vs. Bowling Green (Wilpon Complex), 4 p.m.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The No. 6-ranked University of Michigan softball team completed a weekend sweep of Indiana on Saturday (March 22), winning by a 12-3 score in six innings at the Wilpon Complex, home of Alumni Field. The Wolverines won their third straight by the run rule against the Hoosiers and have a five-game winning streak in the series.

Indiana grabbed an early 2-0 lead behind a run-scoring single by designated player Natalie Lalich in the first inning. With the bases loaded, Lalich hit a seeing-eye single up the middle that scored Breanna Saucedo and Jenna Abraham. Both runs were unearned following an error by the Wolverines.

The Hoosiers added a run in the second on a home run by catcher Kelsey Dotson. Michigan made a pitching change after the homer, bringing junior Haylie Wagner (Orange, Calif./El Modena) into the contest for freshman pitcher Megan Betsa (McDonough, Ga./Union Grove).

Trailing 3-0 in the bottom of the second, Michigan tied the score at three apiece following a three-run home run by freshman Lindsay Montemarano (Seaford, N.Y./Seaford). With runners on the corners and one out, Montemarano blasted the ball down the leftfield line for her first career homer. Freshman second baseman Abby Ramirez (Chicago, Ill./Trinity) singled and stole second to get into scoring position, but the Wolverines were unable to push another run across to take the lead.

In the bottom of the third, Michigan grabbed the lead, 6-3, with three runs for the second straight inning. Sophomore shortstop Sierra Romero (Murrieta, Calif./Vista Murrieta) walked for the sixth time in the series and advanced to second on a sacrifice. Sophomore leftfielder Sierra Lawrence (Snellville, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian) walked, and Romero moved to third on a passed ball on the fourth ball to Lawrence. Senior Taylor Hasselbach (Clarkston, Mich./Clarkston) hit a single to rightfield that scored Romero, giving Michigan its first lead of the contest, 4-3. Junior catcher Lauren Sweet (Corona, Calif./Santiago) then hit a bullet to the right side of the infield that scored Lawrence on a fielder's choice. An error by the Hoosiers added another run for the Wolverines.

U-M scored three runs for the third straight inning in the fourth. With one out, senior right fielder Nicole Sappingfield (Norco, Calif./Norco) doubled and came around to score on a two-run home run by Romero -- her team-leading eighth homer of the season -- into the right centerfield bleachers to increase U-M's lead to 8-3. After a hit batter and walk put Wolverines on first and second, Indiana brought Meaghan Murphy in to pitch. Michigan added another run on a wild pitch to make the score 9-3 after four innings.

Wagner pitched out of a jam in the fifth inning after loading the bases on three straight singles. She forced a fly ball out to leftfield and struck out Lalich to end the Hoosiers threat. Wagner won her 15th of the season (15-0). She allowed four hits in five innings of work.

Sappingfield led off the sixth inning with a double over the left fielders head and Romero walked on four pitches. Freshman Kelly Christner (Tinley Park, Ill./Victor J. Andrew), who entered the game at first base, hit the 2-0 pitch over the outfield bleacher in right centerfield to end the game with the run rule. Michigan scored 12 runs on 10 hits and allowed three runs on six hits by Indiana.

Michigan will play a mid-week non-conference game against Bowling Green on Tuesday (March 25). The game will begin at 4 p.m. from Wilpon Complex.

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