ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Following a similar script as yesterday’s explosive win, fourth-ranked Michigan recorded a pair of home runs and scored in every frame en route to a 10-1, five-inning decision against Purdue on Sunday afternoon in front of 1,361 fans at the Wilpon Softball Complex, home of Alumni Field.
Sophomore second baseman Ashley Lane headlined the Wolverines’ offensive effort, going 2-for-3 with four runs batted in, including a three-run bomb in the fourth inning — her second home run of the weekend and team-leading 13th of the season. Senior designated player Alycia Ryan also went yard for Michigan, while freshman leftfielder Nicole Sappingfield drove in two runs in a 1-for-2 effort.
Sophomore RHP Stephanie Speierman earned the victory from the circle, improving to 16-0 on the year, with a one-hit, three-strikeout performance through 3.1 innings.
For the second time in the weekend series, the Wolverines used their first turn at the plate to jump to an early advantage. Senior first baseman Dorian Shaw earned her first RBI hit in seven games to break U-M through on the scoreboard, following Sappingfield’s walk with a screaming double down the leftfield line to score her teammate from first base. Shaw advanced to third when the next pitch was deemed illegal, and two batters later, Lane took advantage of the extra base, lining an RBI single through the left side.
Sappingfield registered her RBI with one out and runners on the corners in the second, slapping a two-run double down the leftfield line to cushion Michigan’s advantage. Two batters, junior third baseman Amanda Chidester knocked a hard-hit grounder to the same area, and when the Boilermaker misplayed the backhanded attempt, Sappingfield raced home to score.
Ryan kept the Wolverines’ offensive production going in the third, capping an extended at-bat with a solo bomb to the baseball field beyond the left centerfield wall. The home run was Ryan’s third of the season and first in front of a home crowd at Alumni Field.
The Boilermakers threatened in the top of the fourth, loading the bases with one out after three walks. Senior RHP Jordan Taylor entered the game and issued back-to-back strikeouts on just six pitches to quickly remove Michigan from the jam.
Michigan recorded four runs in the home half of the inning to push its lead into run-rule territory. Shaw and Chidester recorded consecutive bullet base hits; the latter was rocket single through the left side that scored junior centerfielder Bree Evans from third. With two on base for Lane in the next at-bat, the Wolverine power hitter connected with the 1-1 pitch and sailed it deep to left center, just sneaking it over the wall for her second home run of the weekend.
Purdue put two on in the top of the fifth after a leadoff single and a misplayed grounder, but U-M got out of the jam quickly, needing just seven pitches to get its final three outs on a fielder’s choice, a failed steal attempt and a groundout.