Blanchard's Grand Slam, Driesenga's Shutout Help U-M Bury OSU
Caitlin Blanchard

April 6, 2013

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Site: Wilpon Complex (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Score: #12 Michigan 11, Ohio State 0 (5 innings)
Records: U-M (30-7, 8-0 Big Ten), OSU (21-13, 3-5 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, April 7 -- vs. Ohio State (Wilpon Complex), 1 p.m.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The No. 12 University of Michigan softball team blasted three home runs, including a grand slam from junior Caitlin Blanchard (Petersburg, Mich./Summerfield), and sophomore Sara Driesenga (Hudsonville, Mich./Hudsonville) pitched a complete game shutout for an 11-0 run-rule victory in five innings over Ohio State on Saturday (April 6) at the Wilpon Complex, home of Alumni Field.

It marked the seventh shutout of the season for the Wolverines and the second in Big Ten play.

The U-M offense started quickly with three runs in the bottom of the first. Leadoff hitter junior Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community) and junior Nicole Sappingfield (Norco, Calif./Norco) delivered back-to-back singles to start the inning. Freshman Sierra Romero (Murrieta, Calif./Murrieta) drove in Doyle with a scorching double into the leftcenter gap to put U-M on top 1-0.

Senior Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido) and sophomore Lauren Sweet (Corona, Calif./Santiago) both had run-scoring singles in the first to provide a 3-0 Wolverines edge after one.

The big inning came in the second when the Maize and Blue scored six times on four hits and five walks. Following three straight walks to Doyle, Sappingfield and Romero, Blanchard stepped to the plate. She hit a missile to centerfield for her first career grand slam. The offense reset itself, and the Wolverines added one more run on a single from freshman Sierra Lawrence (Norcross, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian)

Driesenga struck out two batters and induced 12 groundball outs from Buckeyes hitters. The defense turned a nifty 5-4-3 double play in the second inning, its second in as many games. The sophomore needed just 72 pitches to get through five innings.

In the fourth inning, OSU loaded the bases on a hit-by-pitch, single and walk but Driesenga got another groundball out to end the inning.

The Wolverines' firepower sparked once more in the fifth inning. Freshman Kelsey Susalla (Garden City, Mich./Garden City) came on as a pinch hitter for Sweet. After falling behind 1-2, she pounded a home run to dead centerfield. Not to be outdone by her classmate, Lawrence hit a rocket three pitches later out to left for her fourth home run of the year. It was also her third hit of the game, a new career best. The two solo shots delivered runs number 10 and 11 for the Wolverines.

The game ended in the run-rule win for U-M after the top of the fifth inning. Driesenga retired the final batter on a groundout to second.

The Wolverines conclude the series against Ohio State on Sunday (April 7) at the Wilpon Complex at 1 p.m.

Contact: Michael Kasiborski (734) 763-4423

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