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April 13, 1998 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 1998-04-13

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4B - The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - April 13, 1998

SOFTBALL

Player of the Week
sara Griff"n
Last w eekend :
Sara Griffin
improved her
season record to
21-0 making her
the NCAA leader
in victories.
Griffin earned
her 32nd career Griffin
shutout in a 90 decision on
Saturday.
Griffin was also Stellar at the
plate, going 510 on the week-
end.
Key play:
Cathy Davie blasted her second home
run over the center field fence in
Sunday's 6-5 Michigan victory. Her
homer gave Michigan the lead for
good, 4-3, in the bottom of the fifth.
Davie also had a two-run homer in the
second game of Saturday's double
header.
Quotable
"We really haven't peaked yet. I
think we have a lot of room for
improvement, but we have incredible
potential. When we do peak, we'll
be really strong."
- Catcher Melissa Gentile, about
the 34-3 Michigan softball team.
Schedule m
Aprl 14 April 16 April 18-19
at a "m ci WESTERN NORT
Statl MICHFIAN ESTERN.r
2 p.m. 2 p.m. i p.m.r
Arl21 Api 2.2 :My 23
PURDUE IOWA at
2 p.m. .1 p.m. WisconsIn
MICHIGAN MINNESOTA
Player AB R H BI Player AB R H B8
Conrad1b 5321 Midthun f3010
Tate i 4 220 Peters 2b 4 00 0
Gentilec 4 00 0 Holden I 3 0 0 0
Garza pr 0 1 00 Beelers 3 10 0
Griffin dh/p 4 0 2 1 Hegland 3b 1 2 1 1
DavielH 4 0 3 3 Brophy c 3 0 1 1
Kosanke3b 4 02 0 Ballardib 2 000
Mika cf 4 0 1 0 Severson dh 2 0 1 1
Tune ss 3 1 0 0 Schwartz rf 2 0 0 0
Judd ph 1 10 0 Bennett ph 1 00 0
Taylor 2b 3 1 0 0 Klaviter p 0 0 0 0
Camacho p 0 0 0 0
Totals 366135 Totals 24343
IP H R ER 8 SO
Michigan
Griffin W, 19-0 7 4 3 3 4 8
Minnesota
Klavit rL 11-6 6 13 6 2 2 5
Camacho 1 0 0 0 0 1
- St - -a
MICHIGAN MINNESOTA
Player ABR H BI Player A R H Bf
Conrad1b 3 1 2 2 Midthunof 30 0 0
Tate rf 3 1 1 2 Peters 2b 2 0 1 0
Gentile c 3 0 1 0 Holden H 2 00 0
Garzapr 0 1 0 0 Beelerss 2 0 0 0
Griffin p 2 1 1 0 Hegland 3b 2 0 1 0
Mikapr 0 1 0 0 Brophyc 0 0 0 0
Davie If 3 1 1 2 Hae pr 0 0 0 0
Kosanke3b 2 0 1 1 Seversondh2 00 0
Kelley c 2 1 1 0 Bennett H 2 0 0 0
Tuness 2 100 Schwartzif 0 0 0 0
Taylor 2b 2 1 1 0 Ballardb 1 000
Logue p 0 00 0
Camacho p 0 0 0 0
Totals 2299 7 Totals 16020
IP H R ER 8 SO
Michigan
Griffin W,20-0 5 2 0 0 2 2
Minnesota
Logue L14-3 4 8 7 6 0 1
Camacho .1 1 2 2 1 0
MICHIGAN MICHIGAN
Player AB R H 61 Player AB R H B6
Conradib 4 1 3 0 Midthunf$ 4 1 1 0
Tate rt 2 1 1 0 Peters 2b 4 0 0 0
Gentilec 4122 Holden H 4111
Garza pr 0 0 00 Beeers 3 11 1
Griffin p 4 1 2 2 Hegland 3b 2 1 2 0
Daviel 3 1 1 2 Brophyc 4 1 2 2
Kosanke 3b 4 0 1 0 Severson dh 4 0 0 0

Mikacf 3 0 1 0 Ballardib 2 0 0 0
Taylor 2b 3 0 0 0 Mooneyph 1 0 0 0
Kelley rf 3 1 1 0 Schwartz rf 2 0 1 0
Tune ss 0 0 0 0 Bennettph 1 0 0 0
Kaviter p 0 0 0 0
Logue p 0 0 0 0
Totals 306 126 Totals 31 58 4
IP H R ER BB SO
Michigan
GriffinW21-0 7 8 5 3 3 7
Minnesota
Klaviter L, 11-7 4.2 9 4 4 0 2
Logue 2.1 3 2 2 0 0
Big Ten Standings
Team Con. Overall
Michigan 114 34-3
Minnesota 7-4 33-11
Northwestern 7-4 24-12
Iowa 5-4 24-10
Wisconsin 5-4 14-19-1
Michigan State 6-5 23-12
Purdue 3-6 23-19
Ohio State 4-9 17-18
Penn State 4-9 14-21-1
Indiana 3-10 9-23-1

SERIES SCORE
Michigan 4, Minnesota 0

Games played at
Bierman Softball Complex,
Minneapolis, Minn.

A

Explosive hitting leads
Wolverines to victory.

By Uma Subramanlan
Daily Sports Writer
The pitch, the crack of the bat and the roar of the
crowd come together to make magic in the ball-
park. This past weekend, minus the roaring of a
hostile Minnesota crowd, the Michigan softball
team had what for any other team would have been
a magical performance. Even for No. 2 Michigan,
the weekend was pretty impressive.
Its star pitcher, Sara Griffin, won three straight
games to improve to 21-0 on the year and it's
defense was stellar committing only six errors
during the weekend. But the most impressive thing
about this weekend was its hitting. The team aver-
age over the weekend was a high .415.
With the Golden Gophers inhabiting the second
spot in the Big Ten, this series was crucial for the
first-place Wolverines.
"They were huge games for us," Michigan
catcher Melissa Gentile said. "Two of the games
were really tight and they could have gone either
way. Our hitting really came through."
That was especially evident in yesterday's game.
The Wolverines were down early after Minnesota
scored two runs in the first inning. Minnesota had
a 3-1 lead heading into the fifth inning. A short
while later, designated hitter Cathy Davie smacked
a two-run homer over the center field fence giving
the Wolverines their first lead.
"My home run today was important because we
really needed a lift," Davie said.
"We were down and that tied it back up."
Offensively Davie, was the biggest contributor
last weekend. On Sunday, Davie went t -for-3, but
it was on Saturday that she made her biggest
impact. She drove in five RBI on the day with
three in the first game.
In the second game of the doubleheader she had
another home run which finished off the Gophers

for the day in only five innings.
"I was on deck and we had a six run lead. They
told me to go up there and finish them off with a
home run," Davie joked. "It was the first time in
my life that I'd gone up to bat looking to hit a home
run and actually done it. Usually that kinda stuff
doesn't work. It was really exciting."
Though enthusiastic about her own perfor-
mance, Davie was especially pleased with the
team effort.
"Our pitching was awesome, our defense was
awesome, and our hitting was awesome," Davie
said. "The greatest thing about this team is that if
one person is struggling there will always be
someone else who will be on. There's not one
weak spot in our lineup. But, when we're all on, it's
amazing. That's what happened this weekend."
Everyone was definitely on in the second game.
of Saturday's doubleheader. In that game, only two
Wolverines did not record hits, and nearly every-
one else batted .500. Though it took three innings
for the bats to get cracking, when it did happen it
lit up Bierman Softball Complex. Michigan scored
one run in the bottom of the third, two in the bot-
tom of the fourth, and six in the bottom of the
sixth.
Besides Davie, pitcher Sara Griffin, and junior
first baseman Traci Conrad were on fire. Conrad
batted 5-for-8 on Saturday and 3-for-4 on Sunday
giving her the highest batting average on the team.
Though Gentile was not entirely pleased with
her own effort, she did hit her 12th double of the
year with a two-run shot to left center in today's
game and finished 2-for-4 at the plate.
"I think we're definitely playing good ball,"
Gentile said. "We really haven't peaked yet. I think
we have a lot of room for improvement especially
defensively, but we have a lot of potential. When
we do peak, we'll be really strong."

FILE PHOTO
Michigan's Pam Kosanke drove in a run in the bottom of the fifth inning in the second game of
Saturday's doubleheader. The fifth was too much for the Gophers, who were shelled by the Wolverines.

Gophers

- Griffin's latest prey

By Uma Subramanian
Daily Sports Writer
With three wins in the pitching circle last weekend, Sara
Griffin improved her personal season record to an NCAA
best 21-0. She has an all-time record of 10-0 against the
Golden Gophers with four shutouts. Saturday's game two
shutout was Griffin's 32nd.
The weekend's games were Griffin's first outings against
Minnesota since May 1996 when she had a pair of shutouts.
Last weekend, Griffin was also stellar at the plate going 5-for-
__------.... 10 on the weekend.
-of aCONRAD STILL SWINGING STRONG:
Softbal After the weekend series, Traci
Notebook Conrad's batting average improved to
-................. .453 moving her ahead of Melissa
Gentile on the Michigan season batting average list.
Conrad had two doubles in the first game of Saturday's
doubleheader. She went 5-for-8 on Saturday and 3-for-4 on
Sunday.
THE LEADERS: This weekend's series sweep adds to
Michigan's commanding lead in the all-time series record.
The Wolverines lead 42-19.
The last time Michigan lost to the Golden Gophers was
May 4, 1996 in a tight 7-6 contest.
BLOWN OUT IN FIVE: In the second game of Saturday's
double header, Michigan's bats came alive.
Leading the Wolverines was Traci Conrad who batted .625
on the day. Conrad started the scoring for the Wolverines in
game two driving home Lisa Keiley.
In the fourth Michigan's other two power hitters, Griffin
and Melissa Gentile, took over. Gentile lead off the inning
with a single. Griffin was the next hitter to reach base after
singling to right field. Christine Garza who was pinch run-
ning for Gentile was driven home by Pam Kosanke. Griffin
advanced to third on that hit.

On a double steal attempt, Griffin scored, but Kosanke was
caught at second. In the bottom of the fifth, all hell brok
loose and the sun set on the Gophers' day.
After Rebecca Tune reached base on an error, Conrad
drove her home picking upher second RBI. Then, Kellyn Tate
tripled, scoring Conrad and Melissa Taylor who singled to left
center.
Cathy Davie put the icing on the cake blasting her first of
two weekend home runs.
The game ended on thie NCAA's mercy rule which states
that the game is over if oine team has an eight run lead after
five innings.
"I don't think anyone expected us to blow them out6
Gentile said. "They're a ieally good team."
THE LONG BALL: In Siunday's game Davie drove home
her second home-run bringing her career total nine.
"It was so exciting," Davie said. "I was so proud to be
a part of this team !this weekend. Everything came
together. It was great."
Against Minnesota Davie recorded her 103 career RBI
and her 24th of the season. She moved from ninth place
to fifth place on the all-time career RBI list.
BEST START EVER~ With this sweep, the Wolverines
are on a 15-game witi streak and undefeated in the Bi
Ten. The start is the liest in Michigan history.
The team has been ranked second in the nation six
weeks running. In last week's poll, Michigan received all
of the second-place votes for a total of 600 points.
HOME TO STAY, AT LEAST FOR A WHILE: After Tuesday's
upcoming doublelheader at Michigan State, the
Wolverines will be home for three conference series
against Northwestern, Purdue, and Iowa.
The games are pairt of a grueling seven-game-nine-day
stretch. The Wolverines will face Western Michigan on
Thursday to open te home stand.

JOHN KRAFT/Daily
Traci Conrad had a big weekend at the plate, going 5-for-8 on Saturday and 3-for-4
on Sunday. Conrad helped Michigan to a 9-0 shutout over Minnesota on Saturday.

GRIFFIN
Continued from Page 113
"Michigan was nothing like I had ever seen," Griffin said.
"The tradition and layout of the campus and athletic facilities
were totally different from what I was used to. I really liked
everything."
Another thing that Griffin has taken a liking to is Michigan
coach Carol Hutchins. Hutchins - with 484 victories in her
career - is the winningest Michigan women's coach. While
Griffin has given Hutchins 92 of those wins while on the
mound, she has also received quite a bit from her coach.
"I have had a great experience at Michigan' Griffin said.
Hutchins "treats you like adults - if you give her respect,
she'll give you respect as well. She really knows her softball.
As I have gotten older, I sometimes listen to her speeches and
think, 'Wow!' She comes up with great points that no one
else touches upon."
Since coming to Michigan, Griffin's fastball has rarely
been touched by the opposition. Although her heavy work-
load causes her to give up hits at times, it also encourages her
to finish strong as well.
A case in point is last Sunday's game against Ohio State.
Pitching in her fifth game in a row, Griffin gave up three runs
to the Buckeyes and trailed 3-2 heading into the sixth inning.
The Wolverines got two runs to go ahead 4-3 heading into
the seventh. While the final inning can sometimes be deadly

just tell myself that I need to shut them down and we need to
win the game."
Griffin's sense of urgency and love for work can be under-
stood after last season. Ddring a game against Iowa, Griffin
- while chasing a bunt - collided into first baseman Traci
Conrad. The collision broke four bones in her left arm and
forced her out for the season.
"It was an extremely hard time for me," Griffin said. "I
didn't feel a part of the team - I felt as if my identity had
been taken away. I was so upset, I would come home crying.
"It was really tough because I couldn't express my feelings
in front of my teammates. If they had see* me upset, it would
have brought them down.'
There isn't much bringing Griffin and the Wolverines
down this year. With 16 consecutive wins and a team-record
8-0 Big Ten start, there is a feeling that the softball team
could be the third national champions at Michigan this year.
"This team definitely has expectations, but they really did-
n't hit us until we were ranked No.2," Griffin said. "Our goal
is to get to the College World Series and win it."
Championship or not, Griffin doesn't expect her career to
end after this season.
"I am hoping to become a graduate assistant after this
year," Griffin said. "I have applied to some schools back
home - I miss the California weather. I am also in the
Olympic training process for the 2000 Summer Olympics."
Whether Griffin is in Sydney, Ann Arbor or California,

Sarah Griffin had
a stellar weeke
both in the pitch-
er's circle, where
she went unde-
feated, and at
the plate, where
she hit .500 for

USA Today/NFCA poll
Here is the new USA Today/ NFSCA top 25 college
softball poll with results through April 8th. First-place
votes in parentheses.
Team Points Prev.
1. Arizona (25) 625 1
2. MWl09Mn6000 2I

":

I _ w -

M. 4

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