April 21, 2010
Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Wilpon Softball Complex)
Scores: #2 Michigan 8, Penn State 0 (5 inn.); #2 Michigan 8, Penn State 0 (5 inn.)
Records: U-M (35-5, 11-0 Big Ten), PSU (26-16, 5-7 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, April 24 -- at Purdue (West Lafayette, Ind.), 4 p.m.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Junior RHP Jordan Taylor (Valencia, Calif./Valencia HS) tossed her second perfect game in three starts to headline the No. 2-ranked University of Michigan softball team's commanding pitching effort against Penn State on Wednesday (April 21) in front of 1,429 fans at the Wilpon Softball Complex, home of Alumni Field. U-M allowed just one combined hit in back-to-back 8-0, five-inning shutouts against the Nittany Lions.
Taylor fanned nine of 15 Penn State batters faced, earning two strikeouts apiece in each of the first three innings, to improve to 18-2 on the season. The effort was Taylor's sixth career no-hitter, giving her sole possession of Michigan's all-time record in the category. Senior LHP Nikki Nemitz (St. Clair Shores, Mich./Regina HS) earned the decision in the nightcap, upping her record to 15-3 with a four-strikeout one-hitter through three innings. Freshman RHP Stephanie Speierman (Columbia, Md./Hammond HS) entered in the fourth and struck out three in two shutout innings.
Senior shortstop Molly Bausher (Las Vegas, Nev./Spring Valley HS) went 3-for-4 with two runs batted in on the day from the nine spot in the order to headline the Wolverine offense. Senior third baseman Maggie Viefhaus (Eureka, Mo./Eureka HS) tallied a hit in each contest, including a three-run homer in the opener, while Nemitz went deep for three runs in the second game.
The Wolverines used the long ball to put up big runs in the first game, tallying home runs in the third and fourth innings before an RBI double brought an abbreviated end to the contest in the fifth. Viefhaus and senior catcher Roya St. Clair (Livonia, Mich./Stevenson HS) homered in back-to-back at-bats in the third, sending deep balls to opposite sides of the field. Viefhaus' line-drive homer followed a pair of choppers from sophomore centerfielder Bree Evans (Bloomington, Calif./Rialto HS) and senior rightfielder Angela Findlay (Lockport, Ill./East HS) and reached the middle rows of the outfield grandstand beyond rightfield. St. Clair connected with the 1-1 pitch in the subsequent at-bat, towering a high solo shot down the leftfield fence.
Nemitz led off the fourth with a screamer down the rightfield line for a single, and Bausher followed with a sharp hit to shortstop before Findlay sent both runners home on another three-run shot into the rightfield grandstand.
The Wolverines secured the game-ending tally with one out in the fifth. Freshman second baseman Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido HS) accepted a full-count walk to lead off the frame and advanced on a groundout before racing home on senior leftfielder Kristin Larsen's (Orion, Mich./Lake Orion HS) RBI double to left-center. The run-scoring hit was the fourth of Larsen's career.
Michigan picked up where it left off in the nightcap, scoring runs in each of the opening three frames to secure its run-rule advantage. Sophomore second baseman Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich./Cabrini HS) and Nemitz drove in five first-inning runs on back-to-back hits. Chidester followed a Viefhaus double and a pair of walks with a two-run, line-drive laser to the centerfield wall for a single. Nemitz lifted a full-count, three-run blast over the fence in right-center in the next at-bat.
Bausher headlined Michigan's second- and third-inning efforts. She led off the former with a double to the wall in left-centerfield before coming home on a sacrifice fly two batters later. In the third, after back-to-back walks to Nemitz and Larsen, Bausher tucked a well-placed double just inside the rightfield line to drive in U-M's final two runs.
The Maize and Blue will hit the road this weekend, heading to West Lafayette, Ind., for a two-game series against Purdue. Michigan will face the Boilermakers at 4 p.m. on Saturday (April 24) and 1 p.m. on Sunday (April 25). Both games will be held at the Varsity Softball Complex.
Contact: Leah Howard (734) 763-4423