May 4, 2013
Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Wilpon Complex)
Score: #10 Michigan 16, Northwestern 1 (5 innings)
Records: U-M (43-9, 19-2 Big Ten), Northwestern (30-20, 12-9 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, May 5 -- vs. Northwestern (Wilpon Complex), Noon
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- A 16-run barrage, including a record-setting home run from freshman Sierra Romero (Murrieta, Calif./Vista Murrieta), carried the No. 10-ranked University of Michigan softball team to a 16-1 five-inning decision over the Northwestern Wildcats today (Saturday, May 4) at the Wilpon Complex, home of Alumni Field.
Romero crushed a two-run home run in the first inning to put the Wolverines on top for good. It marked the 22nd homer of the season for the freshman shortstop and established a new single-season U-M record.
Romero batted 1-for-1 with two runs batted in and was intentionally walked three times - including twice in the fourth inning. On two of those occasions junior Caitlin Blanchard (Petersburg, Mich./Summerfield) came up with a hit immediately following the intentional walk, including a two-run double in the fourth inning that broke the game open.
Michigan piled up nine runs in the fourth inning beginning with Blanchard's double to put the game out of reach. Junior Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community) and senior Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido) each drove in two runs in the fourth frame, Lane's coming on a double down the right field line. Freshman Kelsey Susalla (Garden City, Mich./Garden City) added a run-scoring single and U-M scored twice more on a Northwestern error.
The Wolverines built a 6-0 lead after two innings on Romero's home run and then four more runs in the second: a two-run single from Blanchard followed two batters later by a two-run homer from sophomore Lauren Sweet (Corona, Calif./Santiago). Sweet's home run was her eighth of the season and seventh in Big Ten Conference play. U-M made it 7-0 in the third on a solo shot from freshman Sierra Lawrence (Norcross, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian).
The run production was more than enough for starting pitcher Haylie Wagner (Orange, Calif./El Modeno) who pitched all five innings. Wagner cruised through the first two innings retiring the Wildcats in order. She got into trouble in the third following a Wildcat double and a wild pitch, putting a runner on third with no outs. But she responded with a ground out, strike out looking and another ground out to escape without any damage done.
Northwestern scored one run in the fourth on two hits and a sacrifice fly. Then in the fifth the U-M defense came up with a slick double play. Meaghan Lamberth hit a line drive at Wagner and she managed to get a glove on it. Romero caught the deflection and doubled off the runner on first who had gotten too far from the bag.
In all Wagner struck out four batters and surrendered four hits. She improved her record to 18-2 as the Maize and Blue won its 19th run-rule decision on the year.
Michigan will finish off the regular season tomorrow (May 5) against Northwestern at the Wilpon Complex. First pitch is scheduled for 12:05 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.
Contact: Michael Kasiborski (734) 763-4423