TAMPA, Fla. -- The No. 8 Michigan softball team swept the second day of the USF Softball Classic on Sunday at the USF Softball Stadium. The Wolverines defeated Hampton 9-2 and Illinois State 4-1 to start the 2015 season with a 3-1 mark.
Megan Betsa struck out 14 Hampton batters in the opener. She allowed just one hit and one earned run with a pair of walks to pick up her first win of 2015. Sierra Romero was 3-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs and her first home run of the year. Sierra Lawrence and Kelsey Susalla had two RBIs apiece while freshman Aidan Falk roped a pair of hits in the Hampton win.
Sara Driesenga fanned nine Illinois State hitters in the second game of the double header. She allowed an unearned run with five hits to pick up her second win of the year.
After loading the bases and not scoring against Hampton in the first, the Wolverines quickly put up a pair of runs in the third. Kelly Christner reached on an infield single and trotted home on Romero's homer, a lined shot to left field. Two batters later, Driesenga doubled to the gap in left field. Olivia Richvalsky came on to pinch run and she scored on Susalla's single to center.
The Maize and Blue scored three more runs in the fourth. Abby Ramirez was hit by a pitch and Lawrence walked to open the frame. Both runners moved up on a passed ball and UM loaded the bases after Christner's walk. Romero brought in a pair with a single and Susalla drove in Christner on an RBI groundout to short.
Hampton scored two runs in the top of the sixth, but Michigan used some two-out magic to make it 9-2 in the bottom of the frame. Lindsay Montemarano walked with two away. She moved to third after Nikki Wald's single to right. Montemarano scored on an RBI single off the bat of Amanda Vargas. Lawrence then drove in a pair with a double to the wall in left.
Illinois State used an error and a double to plate a run in the first in the nightcap. The Wolverines answered with three runs in the fourth. Susalla reached on a one-out single. She went to second on Tera Blanco's groundout and scored on Falk's single up the middle. A walk to Ramirez and a throwing error by the Redbirds gave the Maize and Blue the 3-1 lead heading to the fifth.
The Wolverines added insurance in the bottom of the sixth as Taylor Swearingen belted a solo home run to lead off the frame. It was her first home run in a Michigan uniform.