No. 22 Michigan (34-11, 16-1 B1G) posted multiple runs in four innings to earn a 16-1 win over Michigan State in five innings on Tuesday night in Ann Arbor.
The Wolverines plated four unearned runs in the bottom of the first inning thanks to a three-run homer by MacKenzie Nemitz, added three more in the bottom of the second which included a solo shot by Katie Alexander, and got a grand slam by Faith Canfield that contributed to a nine-run fourth. Meghan Beaubien went the full five innings, scattering three hits.
McKenna Gregory started the game and went 3.1 innings, and was relieved by Alli Walker in the bottom of the fourth.
Ebonee Echols had an RBI double for the Spartans, while her sister Charla and Kaitlyn Eveland also had base hits for the visitors.
The Spartans (15-29, 3-13 Big Ten) dropped their seventh straight game, all against teams in the top four of the Big Ten Standings. MSU's road gets no easier, as the Spartans host league-leading Northwestern this weekend in their final home series of the season..
• Ebonee Echols had an RBI double in the third inning.
• Charla Echols stretched out her season-best hitting streak to eight games with a single in the third inning.
STATS AND STORYLINES
• The Wolverines took a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Faith Canfield led off the game with a single to right, and McKenna Gregory got the next two batters on a fielder's choice and a fly ball to center. She lost Alex Sobczak with a walk on a 3-2 count, and an infield error on a Taylor Uden infield offering allowed the first run to score. Mackenzie Nemitz stepped in and sent a fly ball far over the wall in right to make it a 4-0 game, all on unearned runs.
• MSU got a pair of runners on in the top of the second, as Kaitlyn Eveland legged out an infield single and Melanie Baccaywalked, both with one out on the board. Meghan Beaubien got the next two batters to prevent either runner from coming around.
• Katie Alexander homered to lead off the bottom of the second and push the lead out to 5-0. A bunt single by Natalia Rodriguez was followed by a hit batter to put two runners on. Gregory got a line ball out for the first out of the inning, but Lexie Blair and Sobczak followed with back-to-back singles to plate two more runs. Gregory retired Madison Uden on a fly ball and Nemitz on a swinging strikeout to end the inning.
• In the top of the third, Caitie Ladd was hit by a pitch, and Charla Echols singled to shallow center. Ebonee Echols stepped in with two outs and hit a ball hard to the wall in left field for an RBI double, as Ladd came around to score.
• In the home half of the fourth, Blair led it off with a double to left center, and she went to third on a long fly ball to center by Sobczak. A walk to Uden put runners at the corners for Nemitz, who snapped it up the left field line for a two-run double that scored both runners and made it a 9-1 ballgame. Back-to-back singles by Haley Hoogenraad and Alexander plated a 10th run for the Wolverines. A hit batter loaded the bases with one out, and the Spartans made a pitching change, bringing on Alli Walker. Canfield stepped in and sent a home run over the wall in deep center to push Michigan's lead to 14-1. Walker loaded the bases, got a ground ball that allowed another run to score for the second out of the frame, and then allowed a single to score a ninth run in the frame.