May 14, 2011
Site: East Lansing, Mich. (Secchia Stadium)
Scores: #2 Michigan 8, Michigan State 0 (5 inn.)
Records: U-M (51-4, 18-2 Big Ten), Michigan State (27-27, 6-14 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Fri-Sun., May 20-22 -- at NCAA Regionals (Site TBD)
EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Senior RHP Jordan Taylor (Valencia, Calif./Valencia HS) registered her eighth career no-hitter to lead the No. 2-ranked University of Michigan softball team to an 8-0, five-inning win at Michigan State on Saturday afternoon (May 14) at Secchia Stadium. With the victory, the Wolverines captured outright ownership of their fourth straight Big Ten Conference title with an 18-2 league record.
For the second consecutive day, Taylor dominated the Spartan lineup, striking out six batters while allowing just three base runners on two walks and a late fielding error. The no-hitter was Taylor's second on the year, while her complete-game shutout effort was her 11th and second in as many games. She improved to 29-3 on the season.
Junior third baseman Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich./Cabrini HS) went 3-for-3 with two runs batted in to headline the Wolverine offense, capping Big Ten play with a stellar .492 league average. Junior centerfielder Bree Evans (Bloomington, Calif./Rialto HS) and senior designated player Marley Powers (Owosso, Mich./Owosso HS) tallied two hits apiece, while sophomore second baseman Ashley Lane (Escondido, Calif./Escondido HS) drove in three runs on a second-inning home run.
Chidester provided Michigan its first advantage in the first, following a leadoff hit and a hit-by-pitch with a line-drive single that curved into rightfield and allowed Evans to score from second base.
The Wolverines neared run-rule territory with an explosive second inning, using five hits and a walk to score six runs and pad their lead to 7-0. After Powers led off with a shallow poke to leftfield, Evans capped an extended, eight-pitch at-bat with an RBI triple -- her fourth of the season. Evans came home one batter late when freshman leftfielder Lyndsay Doyle (Channahon, Ill./Minooka Community HS) knocked a hot shot through the third baseman's legs for an RBI single. Chidester drove in another on a lined single over the shortstop's head to induce an MSU pitching change, and the swap proved ineffective when, in the next at-bat, Lane worked the count full before lining a three-run bullet over the rightfield fence -- her team-leading 17th home run of the season.
After a scoreless third, Powers provided Michigan the necessary eight-run cushion in the fourth, smacking a bases-loaded, two-out RBI single up the middle to score senior first baseman Dorian Shaw (Burke, Va./Robinson SS) from third.
The Spartans threatened with two runners in scoring position in the bottom of the fourth, reaching on a walk and a dropped fly to shallow rightfield, but Taylor got out of the inning on a lineout to shortstop, and struck out one in a quick 1-2-3 bottom of the fifth.
The NCAA Championship team selections and regional sites will be announced tomorrow (Sunday, May 15) at 10 p.m. on ESPNU. Michigan has been in the NCAA field in each of the last 16 seasons, reaching the Women's College World Series nine times and winning the 2005 national championship.
N O T E S
With today's victory, Michigan improved to 73-27 in the all-time series against Michigan State.
The Wolverines have posted a 69-7 Big Ten record over their last four championship seasons. Michigan has won its last three Big Ten titles outright after sharing the 2008 championship with Northwestern.
Michigan owns 17 run-rule decisions this season, including six in Big Ten play.
In tallying her eighth career no-hitter, senior RHP Jordan Taylor improved on her own Wolverine program record in the category.
Taylor notched her 41st career complete-game shutout to claim sole possession of the second spot among Michigan's all-time leaders in the category. She needs just two more to reach record holder Jennie Ritter (43, 2002-06).
With her career mark of 105-16, Taylor is also just one win shy of Michigan's career wins record. Sara Griffin (1995-98) holds the all-time record with a 106-19 record.
Junior third baseman Amanda Chidester hit .492 (30-for-62) with 35 RBI in Big Ten play this season.
Q U O T E S
U-M Senior RHP Jordan Taylor
On today's pitching effort ... "It was a good game. When you go back-to-back against the same team, you always want to give them a different look, so I thought Caitlin [Blanchard] and I mixed it up pretty well. Yesterday, I had a lot of strikeouts, but they were also making more solid contact. Today, there wasn't so much solid contact; it was more jammed hits. I was pretty happy with both performances."
On her recent string of solid performances ... "Obviously, I want to be my best for the postseason, and I feel like I'm moving toward that direction. I'm feeling pretty good right now and looking forward to next weekend."
U-M Junior Third Baseman Amanda Chidester
On today's game and the weekend series ... "It's fun playing Michigan State. They're a big rival, and both games were in front of packed crowds and just a lot of fun. Like Hutch always says, 'Get base runners and see what happens,' and that's what we did. Bree [Evans] did a great job, so did [Lyndsay] Doyle in the No. 2 spot, Dorian [Shaw] was getting on -- everything was just really going for us."
On closing the MSU series with a lopsided win ... "We said before the game that we were going to break the curse [of having a letdown in game two]. We had our mind really set on that. We focused on just having fun and not worrying about pressuring. We just went out like we do for every game and just went as hard as we could."
Contact: Leah Howard (734) 763-4423