Freshmen Pitchers Power UM in SB Victory

Submitted by MGoSoftball on February 10th, 2012 at 8:33 PM

Sara Driesenga has played softball since she was very young.  She has been a pitcher for almost that long.  She has known she wanted to be a Wolverine probably since birth.  So Sara finally gets her chance to play for her dream school for her dream coach and do you think she was nervous?  If you guessed yes you would be correct.

Sara was the starting pitcher for UM in the first game of the 2012 campaign against La Tech at the LSU Tournament.  Sara started a little slow today but she finished very strong.  She walked the first 3 batters then settled in just fine.  She got the #4 batter to ground into a fielder’s choice and the #5 batter to hit a fly ball to RF.  La Tech tried to score the runner from third but Lindsay Doyle was having none of that and threw a strike to Lauren Sweet to get the runner at the plate for out number 3.

Sara settled down the remainder of the game and held the Bulldogs in check.  She surrendered two runs on two hits, and stranding 5 runners.  Sara gave up 3 BB while striking out none.  Haylie Wagner came in the game in the 5th inning to pitch the final three innings.  She gave up 4 runs off 4 hits with no walks and 3 strikeouts.  We won the game by a close score of 7-6.

But it gets better, oh so much better.  So much better because we have not seen the likes of Sara in a good little while…A Pitcher that Bats for herself.  That’s right, I said it.  A Pitcher who actually bats.  Sara got a single in her first D1 at bat.  That fact alone will make any parent proud but to pitch so well and get a hit in her first at bat has got to make the Driesenga Family Proud.  Hell the entire town of Hudsonville Mi. is proud of her.  Congrats to you Sara for making us all proud and congrats to Mr. and Mrs. Driesenga as we share in the immense pride you feel for you daughter.  See my Hello posts for more background

The offense was a basic team effort as everyone in the line-up participated; however, it was Sara that had the hot bat.  She went 2 for 4 with an RBI.  Lindsay Doyle went 2 for 4 with a run scored.  Taylor Hasselbach hit a 2 run tater as well.

It was nice to see Stephanie Kirkpatrick back in perfect form.  She injured her knee after 10 games last year.  That forced Coach Hutch to juggle the line-up significantly.  Now that Stephanie is back, Colie looked good and some new faces in the line-up, UM softball is back.  Coach Hutch is wasting no time to get the Freshman in mid-season form early.

Lauren Sweet did a wonderful job behind the dish tonight.  She was a force at the plate too.  Good job Lauren.  The 3 musketeers (freshmen) have all contributed on their very first D1 ballgame.  Awesome job on the attempted sac fly too Lauren.  Thanks so much for picking us.  We all look forward to watching you grow as a player and a person.

Welcome to the family ladies.  You both have made us very proud.  It is not if you win but how much effort to put in.  You give your maize blood, sweat and tears, it will be noticed by the MGo Family.


Old Michigan Man

February 10th, 2012 at 8:48 PM ^

We are very proud of you all.  Congratulations to Sara and Haylie and their parents.  Great game too.

Mgosoftball, thanks for your professionalism.  Your love of the game is obvious and I hope to catch a game or two this year.  You have made this game interesting for me.  Keep up the good work.

Old Michigan Man

February 11th, 2012 at 11:03 AM ^

forward to MGoSoftball's postings as well.  He is better than Punxsutawney Phil in predicting Spring.  When he posts the first game, you know you are 4 weeks away from Spring in Ann Arbor.  Gotta love that.

MGoSoftball, did you make a prediction for the season yet?


February 11th, 2012 at 5:40 AM ^

she was the best hitting pitcher michigan ever had. she was three time all american primarily for her hitting....yet left michigan as their all team leader in career pitching wins at that time back in 1998.


February 10th, 2012 at 11:48 PM ^

Her team is up on the other team involved in The Horror, 4-0. I hope they score another 96 before it gets called. I just wish she was actually pitching instead of pitching the first one.

Update: 7-0.
Update 2: 8-0.


February 11th, 2012 at 12:20 AM ^

Damn good one, too. Sophomore starter on a Summit Leauge team, she was All-State in Ohio, and Cincinnati All-Everything. She had a bit of a shakey transition last season as a freshman, but over the offseason she overtook a former first team all-conference senior to get a kind of 51/49 (in her favor) split in the rotation.

She shut out Alabama State earlier this evening, giving up four hits in five innings, with two walks and three strikeouts.

Update 3: 8-3. Damn...they better hold on to this.


February 11th, 2012 at 12:38 AM ^

follow her team that much ( i figured it out with all the clues you have left over the past year).  She is wearing a head band in her individual photo right?  Lovely young lady, with a touch of the Irish in her ya.

Tell her we wish her luck.


February 11th, 2012 at 12:52 AM ^

She would beg to differ about her picture, but thanks. She's been trying to get a new one basically since it was taken. I'm pretty excited because I'm up here for the semester and I'll be able to see her (and her games) much more often.

8-4 in the bottom of the fifth. Courtney apparently doesn't realize how vital run-ruling this team is to my health.


February 11th, 2012 at 1:09 AM ^

a mercy rule win does wonder for the soul.  When I coach, I dont like to keep score.  It is more important that the girls grow and develop as players and team mates.  I lose track of the score and I end up with a mercy rule win.  It flushes the soul.


February 11th, 2012 at 1:55 PM ^

I've only come to watch softball recently, when I started dating megangoblue (who is an actual user, but only when I heckle her to post), but nowadays I watch a fair amount of softball and I'm starting to understand the game, although anyone could recognize last year that Jordan Taylor = pretty good at sports.

I cheer on M Softball when they play, and I like to brag about the girlfriend, so I'll bring her up when MGoSoftball gets the softball talkin' urge.


February 11th, 2012 at 4:16 PM ^

I would personally like it if she would post a few things about softball from a D1 pitcher's perspective.  I think many on the blog would appreciate it, as I would.

Softball is a fun sport to watch, it goes quick, usually 90 minutes but sometimes 120 minutes, there is a lot of action: 60 foot bases and 200 foot fences.  The stands are very close to the players.  Fans can hear every command that is given from the bench. 

One can even see what color of M&M is given to the players by Coach Hutch.


February 11th, 2012 at 12:39 AM ^

Is Stephanie Kirkpatrick eligible for a redshirt since she only played 10 games last year before she injured her knee?  Does Hutch redshirt players?


February 11th, 2012 at 9:44 AM ^

Looking at the softball roster, there are no players listed as redshirts.  If you look at the football, basketball (men's and women's), and hockey rosters, there are players that are listed as redshirts.

Does Hutch redshirt players?


February 11th, 2012 at 4:20 PM ^

Softball and Baseball NCAA Scholarships are a little different than football.  Each team gets 12 schollies.  The team can divide them up anyway they see fit.  Typically pitchers and upper classmen get the full ride.  The bench players typically get nothing except the experience of a lifetime.

An elite player will get consideration for a RS and it does happen.


February 11th, 2012 at 10:11 AM ^

The Greatest Coach in the history of Michigan Athletics? By some (many) measures, IT IS HUTCH!... I LOVE HUTCH. She ranks with Yost, Plocki (18 Big Ten Titles) & Urbanchek (13 Big Ten Championships, 1 NCAA Title) as the Greatest Coach in the history of Michigan! The young women who choose to be a part of Hutch's program will spend 4 years learning from one of the classiest leaders in ANY sport.


February 11th, 2012 at 7:39 PM ^

Blanchard was just announced as the starting catcher for game #2 and Spiereman is in the circle.

Lauren was Miss California last year so it is not a huge surprise that she would get a few looks.  Hutch is tinkering with the lineup the first few games to see how the girls will act.