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May 28, 2015 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Michigan Daily — michigandaily.com SPORTS

wrote their own page when no

one expected them to, and that’s


was about doing enough to win.
Although he didn’t look like his
usual overpowering self, Adcock
(10-4) earned his third win in eight
days, pitching 5.2 innings and
allowing just two hits.

At the plate, Michigan — enter-

ing the game as the conference’s top
offense — struggled to get things
going, only accumulating six hits in
the game. After falling behind, 1-0,
in the third inning, however, the
bats seized every
opportunity from
a Terrapin error



RBI singles by

ed hitter Cody
Bruder and senior outfielder Kevin
White opened the scoring, and from
there the Wolverines rolled, batting
around in the inning and providing
enough offense to win.

“We always go out there and try

to make the pitcher throw as many
pitches as we can and see a lot of
pitches, and when he makes a mis-
take, that’s when we strike,” said
senior outfielder Jackson Glines,
who led the Tournament with
nine hits. “We’re an opportunistic
offense, (Bakich) doesn’t always
like that, but we try to take what we
can when we can.”

With the eight teams combining

for a .238 batting average through-
out the tournament, hits were at a
premium on both sides. In addition
to Adcock, the Wolverines’ defense
ensured that the four-run fourth

inning was more than enough, rob-
bing base hits and killing rallies.

Sophomore first baseman Carmen

Benedetti made the most notable of
the plays, leaving his feet to snag a
foul ball that had drifted into the sec-
ond row of the stands. With plenty of
errors from high-seeded teams, the
Wolverines’ ability to stay composed
and avoid mistakes stood out.

“We didn’t necessarily avoid

those mistakes in the season,”
Bakich said. “We dug ourselves a
hole, and we had moments early in
the year — starting 2-5 or 0-3 in the
Big Ten — where those were learn-
ing moments for us.”

“We’ve had our struggles, and

those struggles have made us stron-
ger. That’s what you saw this week-




the top of the

Maryland grew
upset with home


strike zone. After multiple delays,
Maryland coach John Szefc was
ejected from the game.

The Terrapins responded by tal-

lying a second run in the eighth
inning, but third baseman Jose
Cuas was thrown out stretching a
double into a triple, ending the rally
with just one run. But Maryland
wasn’t done yet.

Brandon Lowe lived for moments

like this.

Maryland’s second baseman —

seen as one of the best players in the
conference — strolled to the plate
with the bases loaded and two outs
in the ninth inning. The Terrapins
already scored one run to make it
4-3 in the ninth inning, and were
one swing of the bat away from a
lead. They were a swing away from

erasing the four-run Michigan
fourth inning made possible by an
error, a swing away from complet-
ing a three-run comeback effort and
a swing away from punching their
own NCAA Tournament ticket.

Lowe had gone 0-for-3 in the

game, but his team-leading .342 bat-
ting average suggested he wouldn’t
be hitless for long.

In the other dugout, Bakich took

a walk.

Usually perched on the top step,

the coach felt compelled to calm his
team down. As he told everyone they
were fine, then turned to give his
fielders adjustments without blink-
ing, it became clear that the same
coach who mentioned ‘Champion-
ship’ 19 times in his opening press
conference three years ago wasn’t
going to miss his first chance at one
— not if he could help it.

Cronenworth, who would later

be named the tournament’s Most
Outstanding Player, tried every-
thing to stay loose. He clicked his
heels to get the mud off, did a couple
arm circles and took a deep breath.
Turning himself into a high-profile
prospect in his time in Ann Arbor,
Cronenworth was one Lowe swing
away from ending his career at

But he wasn’t ready for that, not

yet. Strike one.

The next pitch was even better

than a strike. Lowe popped up, the
dugout exploded, but restrained
itself because in a rain-soaked game
and a tournament that had seen even
the nation’s best teams self destruct
from errors, you just don’t know.

It was a high floater to left and

senior outfielder Kevin White, who
drove in the winning run with a
seeing-eye single to left in the fourth
inning, camped out under it. White
captured the ball, and Michigan
captured its 36th Big Ten Champi-

For the 22nd time, but just

the first since 2008, the Michi-
gan baseball team is postseason-

In Monday’s NCAA Tournament

selection show, it was announced
that the Wolver-
ines (14-10 Big
Ten, 37-23 over-

to Louisville to
play in a regional
hosted by No. 3

Michigan will

be the third seed

ment. In addition
to the Cardinals,
No. 19 Bradley

State will partici-
pate as the second
and fourth seeds,

The Wolverines will play Bradley

on Friday at 2 p.m. at Jim Patter-
son Stadium. The Braves (9-11 Mis-
souri Valley, 35-19) hold a 3-6 record
against ranked teams and beat their
one Big Ten opponent, Iowa, 5-4 on
April 14.

The tournament is double-elim-

ination format, so Michigan will
need to win at least three games to

advance to a Super Regional. It last
did so in 2007, when it upset No. 1
Vanderbilt in Nashville. Likely its
largest obstacle will be the Car-
dinals (25-5 Atlantic Coast, 45-18

Louisville is 10-5 against ranked

teams, and went 1-2 in three
games against Big Ten teams,
beating Purdue but falling to Indi-
ana and Ohio State. The Cardinals
are no stranger to regional action,
hosting a regional for the third-
straight year and having made the
College World Series each of the
last two seasons.

To make it into the Tourna-

ment, Michigan got hot at the
right time, winning the Big Ten
Tournament to secure an auto-
matic bid. All five of its victories
in the past week were over teams
that made the Tournament — No.
14 Oklahoma State, Indiana, No.
19 Iowa, No. 4 Illinois and Mary-

“It’s still settling in for some of

the guys,” said junior right-hand-
er Jacob Cronenworth after the
announcement. “It’s a whirlwind of
emotions these past 24 hours. It’s
been awesome. I don’t think a lot
of people expected us to win it, and
when we got that final out, it was

From Page 1A

Bradley vs

Matchup: No.
19 Bradley
35-19; Michi-
gan 37-23

When: Fri-
day 2 P.M.

Where: Jim


Bradley awaits
Regional game


Senior outfielder Kevin White looks to help carry Michigan’s success to Louisville.

“We’ve had our


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