Feb. 12, 2016
TAMPA, Fla. – No. 2/2 Michigan (1-0) claimed a 15-3 win in the 2016 season opener over South Carolina (0-1) in the USF Wilson Demarini Tournament at the USF Softball Stadium.
The Wolverines scored in each inning, including three unearned runs in the first after a pair of Gamecock errors. Four more crossed in the second, capped by Aidan Falk’s two-run home run. Two two-out RBI singles plated a pair of Michigan runs in the third, while six came home in the fourth, the final blow a grand slam by Sierra Romero.
South Carolina scored a run in the second after freshman shortstop Kenzi Maguire doubled to start the frame and scored on a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch to senior catcher Jordan Bizzell. Senior left fielder Alaynie Page drove home a run in the fourth with a sacrifice fly, while senior centerfielder Ansley Ard plated the final run with an RBI single in the fifth.
The Gamecocks had the leadoff batter reach base in four of the five innings and loaded the bases in three of the innings, going 0-for-4 in that situation. By contrast, Michigan scored six of its first nine runs with two outs. Falk went 2-for-3 with two home runs, three RBI and three runs scored to lead the Wolverines. Sierra Lawrence scored four runs, while Romero went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and six RBI.
Wolverine starter Megan Betsa (1-0) picked up the win with three innings of work, fanning seven and allowing one earned run on three hits and three walks. Gamecock junior Nickie Blue (0-1) also tossed three innings, giving up nine runs, six earned, on eight hits and four walks. She struck out three.
Michigan went 5-for-8 with two outs in the contest, posting six two-out RBI.
Gamecocks Ard and Maguire both went 3-for-3, with Maguire hitting the only extra-base hit for South Carolina with her double.
– Freshman Kennedy Clark walked twice in her debut, while classmate Alexis Mack stole a base in her first chance as a pinch runner.
– Page did have her first outfield assist, throwing out a Wolverine trying to score to end the fourth.
– Two other Gamecocks drew walks, Page and senior Lauren Masters, while junior Kaylea Snaer had the seventh Gamecock hit.