Junior Michael Harris tied for the
individual title at the Big Ten
Championships this weekend at
Minnesota. Page 15.
May 17, 1999
Softball drops Big Ten final
Minnesota upsets top-seeded Michigan, 3-2, at Alumni Field
By Jon Zemke
Daily Sports Writer Harrison intentionally walked designated hitter
Melissa Gentile, loading the bases to face Rebecca
At practice before the Big Ten softball tournament Tune. Earlier in the day Tune, faced with the exact situ-
last-Thursday, Michigan softball coach Carol Hutchins ation, belted a grand slam against Penn State to begin
ended the short workout with a few words of wisdom. an 11-0 rout. Minnesota was in their hotel at the time
She talked about a runner who tried so hard to impress and did not know of the play.
his father that he kept falling down throughout the race. "Sometimes it's going to click between you and the
Bruised and battered he finished dead last, but his pitcher and whatever they're throwing it's going to hap-
father was still proud of him. Hutchins moral wasn't to pen," Tune said. "And it happened for me"
try hard, but to relax. The Wolverines ended up tripping Tune walked scoring Davie from third to end
over their own few mistakes as they lost in the champi- Michigan's scoring for the day. Klaviter came back on
onship game against Minnesota, 3-2. with two outs left in the game finishing off Michigan's
Minnesota's Dana Ballard, pinch hitting in the top of chances at the conference title.
the seventh, poked a looper into left field to score the Big Ten pitcher of the year Mane Barda (22-3)
game winner from second base. The two-out single matched Minnesota all the way to the end, recording
marked the second time on Saturday that Minnesota nine strikeouts, catching six looking.
cane from behind to win in the seventh. "I wasn't trying to strike everyone out," Barda said.
Michigan opened the game with two runs in bottom "They just watched a lot of pitches that hit the corner."
of the first as they shelled Minnesota's workhorse pitch- Keeping the Golden Gophers scoreless for five innings,
er, Steph Klaviter. Big Ten player of the year Traci the first three without a hit, Minnesota's Shannon Beeler
Conrad (3-4) led off for the Wolverines and ran out an hit a 1-0 Barda pitch over the left field fence. Her 13th
infield single. Catherine Davie later lined a shot over homer tied the game at two. Barda responded by striking
second base to score Conrad from second. out four of the last five outs of the inning.
Stephanie Volpe next hit a long single off the right "Beeler had that look in her eyes when she came up,"
field fence moving Davie to third. With runners on the Hutchins said. "We should have walked her I guess."
corners Minnesota pulled Klaviter in favor ofjunk-ball Earlier Saturday Michigan lost to Minnesota again,
reliever Michelle Harrison. 2-1. Klaviter pitched a five-hitter with five scoreless
"They were hitting some pitches down and hard and innings as Jaime Gillies matched her, allowing five hits
we knew that if anything could offset the down hard and no runs until the seventh. Gentile led off the fifth
pitches, it was the slow junk that (Harrison) was throw- with a towering solo shot into the center field conifers.
ing," Minnesota coach Lisa Bernstien said. Minnesota answered with the winning run on a long
By Michael Kern
Daily Sports Editor
The Michigan baseball team head-
SuAb a ed into its weekend series at Penn
m s State in third place in the Big Ten,
Hospital training in USEn and and south holding a slim one-game lead over
America. Graduates .llgible to practice in fourth place Indiana.
US and abroad. Transfer studWithslceoIndiana
ered, clerkehips avalable. All you nees With a 6-1 win in the first game of
mt have completed pre-medical require- Saturday's doubleheader, and two
FormrlaIfomatocall Indiana losses at first-place Ohio
404 355 1412
or 770 465 9966 State, Michigan (15-13 Big Ten, 29-
w c"becetactedviae-maillat 27 overall) was guaranteed a spot in
admissionsfaism-edu the four-team Big Ten tournament
Our web address is for the third time in four years this
a coming weekend at Ohio State.
The Wolverines dropped
three games of the series
Michigan started quick
first game on Friday, tak
lead after three innings
Wolverines managed onlyc
rest of the way and lostI
score of 5-4.
It looked as though start
might still record a victc
took a 4-2 lead into the fir
But with one out and me
and second, third basem
Fagan homered, stealing
thtI tVel Blanchard --- the
highest-rated recruit in the
nation who had not yet
signed a letter of intent - announc
ing his decision first to his family on
Mother's Day, and then to the public a
day later, there
was plenty of
time for rumors.
MicELLE sWE.LNv /Dary c/r sri 'r li/ e to
Michigan's bats were swinging, but the Wolverines fir. That's r/ty
couldn't quite connect against Minnesota, 'he '/ choose
Al i I g ai us -
fly ball to center. It allowed the runner to tag and score C i r r e n CHRIS
before Volpe, Michigan's catcher, threw out the other Califrriria coach DUPREY
runner at third. Ben Braun used Dupe's
Michigan mercied Iowa on Friday 8-0, iced by anoth- to open api te Scoop
er Gentile home run in the fifth. The dinger came E a syr e r is
directly after a member of Michigan's Alumni band Michigan grm-
yelled for Gentile to hit a homer so "she wouldn't have nasium for Lae// to shoot around
to run so fast." Barda only allowed two hit . whenie /e as ijust a litt/e bot. That's
"We have out most important tournament next," w/ he'/l/go to Cal. Lae/Ne/ ou//d love
Hutchins said. "We're not going to hang our heads the opportnity to r/r with (Virginia
about this very long ... They're going to have hold their recruit) Aajestic Mapp in co//ege.
head up and work even harder to get it." That t h he '// become a Cavalier:
And perhaps relax a little bit more in crunch time. With so-called "experts" psycho-
analyzing the every move of a high
school senior, Michigan coaches and
ourney ot fans craved a shred of reliability.
It was time for the truth - no mat-
ter what the decision. 0
I the other for the Nittany Lions. It was the day after Mother's Day,
at Beaver In the clincher for the Wolverines, one day after Blanchard had shared
Bryan Ralston earned his eighth vic- the news with his family, when they
ly in the tory of the season and improved his got their wish. "LaVell Blanchard has
ing a 4-1 Big Ten record to 6-0 by pitching chosen Michigan!" boomed out Ann
But the five scoreless innings, giving up just Arbor radio station WTKA, proud to
one hit the four hits and striking out three. have been the main source of
by a final Bobby Korecky pitched the final Blanchard updates throughout the
two innings in relief, allowing no final days of tension.
er J.J. Putz earned runs and striking out three on And that one sentence meant t
ory as he just one hit. The Wolverine pitchers rebirth of Michigan basketball.
nal inning. shut down the Nittany Lions' hitters, Sure, Blanhard's not the only
n on first allowing just five hits. player in Lllerbe's first recruiting
ass Shawn Centerfielder Brian Bush led the class. With Kevin Gaines' passing
the game See BASEBALL, Page 15 abilities, Gavin Groninger's shooting
touch and the multiple talents of
Jamal Crawford and Leland
O E M * * Anderson, the Wolverines could have
survived without Blanchard.
What is behind this public infatua-
1 ud a an d e a I tion with Blanchard? His 28.6 points
- YICe*W ' t13t I per game average at Ann Arbor
1 aWeHmade 0f. I Pioneer is certanly a first-class so
1 00t off istec, but oier Mieigan prospects
I $.oe ffMeal Size I have put up imrpessive numsbers
T Smoothie or Fruit Shake I before - even at the junior college
I **5O off Snack Size I level, which tops high school ball any
4G I Smoothie or I day.
rtShakeSigning a McDonald's All-
;ES! " Frt.hakAmerican gives Michigan a degree of
LIY Expires 8/31991 elbow room in the recruiting world,
EprsiaI but even that wouldn't likely cause
cE! 1 I the hysteria that surrounded t
TR. * 522 E. Williams i Blanchard saga. Remember, Jem
(Next to Cottage Inn) Ward was also a highly-touted player
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