Michigan downs Mizzou, 5-3, to move one win away from WCWS
No. 2 Michigan took advantage of a big first inning and stingy defense to edge No. 17 Missouri, 5-3, in its NCAA Super Regional opener on Saturday in front of a sold-out 2,523 fans at the Wilpon Complex, home of Alumni Field.
The win gives the Wolverines a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three series. The teams will square off again Sunday for game two at noon ET on ESPN. If a third game is necessary, it will be televised on ESPNU at 3 p.m.
The Wolverines pounced on Mizzou ace Paige Lowary immediately in the bottom of the first inning, plating three runs on three hits, two hit batters and a walk. Michigan loaded the bases with no outs before sophomore first baseman Tera Blanco roped a two-run single up the middle to break to the scoreless game early. Michigan was hit by pitches in each of the next two at-bats, earning junior third baseman Lindsay Montemarano an RBI on the latter to pad U-M’s lead to 3-0 after the first.
The game’s remaining runs all came via the long ball. Mizzou cut the lead with its first of two homers in the top of the third when designated player Chloe Rathburn snuck a two-run, two-out shot just over the left-center wall. Catcher Kirsten Mack also homered in the sixth with a no-doubt solo shot to leftfield.