Hutch remains the only coach east of the Mississippi River to win NC

Submitted by MGoSoftball on June 8th, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Coach Hutch remains the only coach east of the Mississippi River to win the NC.  This occured this year because ASU bitch-slapped Florida in the WS Finals, 2 games to none.

Florida was the dark horse in this race.  The finished first in the SEC East Division and received a #2 seed in the SEC tournamant but lost to LSU in the semi-finals.  Alabama went on to beat LSU in the SEC Finals.  Florida got revenge when they met up with Alabama in the WS Semi-finals and took 2 games in the double elimination style tournament. 

ASU Fr Pitcher Dallas Escobedo was dominate all season long.  Although, we beat ASU and Esconbedo (1-0) on 17MAR11 at the Judi Garman Classic. 

Michigan, as most know, lost to KY in the Ann Arbor Regional.  KY was a very fast and rather small team that manufactured runs.  KY lost to California in the regionals 2 games to 1.

The team will have a few weeks off before starting fall practices in August.  Fall ball begins in September and usually consists of a few home games and 1 away tournament. 

Bring on the colored leaves

Comments

MGoSoftball

June 8th, 2011 at 1:59 PM ^

We lost 6 seniors this year and only 3 were regular players.  We have a bumper crop of incoming freshemen that I profiled earlier.

My prediction is for a BETTER team next year.  Yes JT will be difficult to replace but Spidey will be a year older and the incoming freshmen will do a great job of support.  The overall record might not be as good as this year's NCAA D1 best (4 losses) but we will be a better team.

MGoSoftball

June 8th, 2011 at 2:50 PM ^

limping at the Regionals with her knee in a wrap.  I asked her how her knee was and all she said was that she will be fine. 

I suspect she will be ready to go by fall ball.  She did not have major surgery like Stephanie Kirkpatrick did.  I did not get a chance to talk to Stephanie but she looked strong during pre-game.

m1817

June 8th, 2011 at 1:54 PM ^

The biggest question mark will be pitching.  Jordan Taylor, who just finished her college career, was U-M's all-time win and strikeout leader. 

Stephanie Speierman will be one of the starters but other starter is up in the air.  There will be several pitchers on the roster who had great HS careers but until they pitch in college game situations, it is unknown as to how they will make the transition.

Replacing Dorian Gray's OBP will be a challenge too but there are some good prospects on the current roster and among the incoming freshmen.

One of the team's strengths is its depth.  Every player on the roster could be a starter for most other programs.  It's just a matter of getting the opportunity.

 

MGoSoftball

June 8th, 2011 at 2:41 PM ^

with  your post.  First JT was the best ever for us, no question.  She was fun to watch.  However that doesnt mean that Spidey, Payne, Driesenga and Wagner cant get the job done.  I will agree that Spidey is not as fast as JT, but with 1 more year under her belt, she will learn to be a smarter pitcher.  Spidey did have a better record than JT.

In terms of the other starter, Hutch will have a plug and play system.  Im just glad that I dont have to decide.  Driesenga could set NCAA records too.  Sara is touted by many to be the #1 overall player in the country right now.  Good Luck Sara in the HS finals.

Wagner is good as well.  She doesnt have the speed of Sara but she is a LHP and that is worth a few Ks per game by itself.  She is a low ball pitcher.

Dorian Shaw (not Gray by the way) went into a slump this year.  Her leadership will be missed for sure but Mandy Gardner will be a great replacement.

BluCheese

June 8th, 2011 at 3:41 PM ^

I think it would be on a case by case basis.  Ritter had a terrific team to help her and Taylor lost some of the key pieces behind her when Stephanie and Colie went down.  That being said I think Jenny was a little mentally tougher when the chips were down.

For me the deciding factor is did you step up when the bright lights are on and your team needs you. 

BluCheese

June 8th, 2011 at 5:05 PM ^

No problem.  I've been watching Michigan softball since the late 90's when we would get to the Series and get erased in 2 games.

In no way was I trying to disparage anything that Jordan has done for us.  In the Super regional the bats went cold and she didn't get much help.

m1817

June 8th, 2011 at 4:33 PM ^

One thing that we will never know is how JT's rotator cuff injury affected her pitching this year, i.e., at what point in the season it started bothering her and if she ever fully recovered from it.  However, JT was a warrior in the tournament when the team needed her.

It was really sad how her great career ended in the game against Kentucky.  I felt worse for her than I did the team when the game was over.

BTW, MGoSoftball, thanks for correcting me on Dorian's last name.  I was trying to do multiple things at one time and wasn't focusing when I was typing.