April 30, 2011
Site: Madison, Wis. (Goodman Softball Complex)
Score: #2 Michigan 9, Wisconsin 1 (5 inn.)
Records: Michigan (43-4, 11-2 Big Ten), Wisconsin (26-20, 6-9 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, May 1 -- at Wisconsin (Madison, Wis.), 3 p.m. CDT (TV: Big Ten Network, live)
MADISON, Wis. -- The No. 2-ranked University of Michigan softball team used a pair of big innings, including a seven-run fourth, to cruise past Wisconsin, 9-1, in five innings, on Saturday afternoon (April 30) at the Goodman Softball Complex.
After missing last weekend with injury, senior RHP Jordan Taylor (Valencia, Calif./Valencia HS) was stellar in her return to the circle, striking out 10 while allowing three hits -- two in the fourth -- and a walk through five innings. Taylor fanned the side in the second and fifth innings en route to her eighth double-digit strikeout performance of the season. She improved to 22-3 on the season.
Senior designated player Alycia Ryan (Morristown, N.J./Morristown HS) and junior third baseman Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich./Cabrini HS) headlined the Wolverine offense with a similar 2-for-3 performances from the No. 3 and cleanup positions. The duo combined for five of Michigan's seven runs batted in. Junior centerfielder Bree Evans (Bloomington, Calif./Rialto HS) extended her hitting streak to a career-best 15 games with a 1-for-3 effort from the leadoff spot.
Michigan struck immediately to garner the lead, using three hits to push across a pair of first-inning runs. Evans led off the contest with a looper to shallow left-centerfield, advanced on a sacrifice and Ryan's single up the middle before racing home when Chidester singled through the left side. Sophomore second baseman Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido HS) singled to a similar spot in the next at-bat, sending a bouncer to the gap that the Badger shortstop could not field cleanly on backhand attempt.
The Wolverines put two runners on in the second and went down 1-2-3 in the third before blowing the game open in the fourth, scoring seven runs on four hits, three walks and a pair of errors to push the game into run-rule territory. With two runners on and no outs after an early error and a single, senior first baseman Dorian Shaw (Burke, Va./Robinson SS) sent a hard chopper to the shortstop position, where it snuck through the Badger infielder's legs to allow both U-M base runners to score unearned. A subsequent infield single and a walk loaded the bases, and Ryan took advantage with a deep shot to centerfield. The Badger outfielder sprinted to get her glove on it but could not reel it in as Ryan rounded the bases for a three-run triple -- the first three-bagger of her collegiate career. The Wolverines added runs on a Chidester RBI bloop single to left-center and a Shaw bases-loaded walk to round out its productive inning.
Wisconsin spoiled Taylor's shutout bid with a run in the bottom of the fourth, stringing together a leadoff comebacker to the circle and an RBI single to leftfield. Freshman catcher Caitlin Blanchard (Petersburg, Mich./Summerfield HS) threw out Badger base runner on a steal attempt, before Taylor fanned the game's final five batters to seal the victory. She set down the side in the fifth on just 11 pitches.
The Wolverines will wrap up their two-game series against Wisconsin tomorrow (Sunday, May 1), squaring off against the Badgers at 3 p.m. CDT at Goodball Softball Complex in Madison, Wis. The game will air live on the Big Ten Network.
Contact: Leah Howard (734) 763-4423