Michigan softball drops NCAA Tournament opener to Notre Dame
After stumbling into the NCAA Tournament, Michigan was tripped up in its opener by Notre Dame, 4-1, Friday at John Cropp Stadium in the Lexington, Kentucky Regional.
The Wolverines (43-12) were held to three hits — a second-inning single by Madison Uden, a fifth-inning single by Aidan Falk and seventh-inning double by Natalie Peters — by Fighting Irish pitcher Alexis Hollaway.
Michigan freshman ace Meghan Beaubien did her best to counter in the pitchers' duel, scattering six hits and three walks in 6.2 innings but gave up a sacrifice fly to Notre Dame's Melissa Rochford in the first and was chased after a two-out, two-run double by Morgan Reed in the seventh.
Cait Brooks added an RBI single to cap a three-run seventh for Notre Dame (33-21).
Michigan rallied with two outs in the bottom half of the inning as Peters drove in Katie Alexander with an RBI double down the right-field line and Tera Blanco drew a walk to bring the tying run to the plate. But Hollaway ended the comeback bid by getting Faith Canfield to bounce into a fielder's choice to end it.
Michigan will look to keep its season alive against the loser of Kentucky vs. Illinois-Chicago in an elimination game at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
The Kentucky vs. Illinois-Chicago game was postponed by weather until 10 a.m. Saturday.
Game 1: No. 3 Notre Dame 4, No. 2 Michigan 1
Game 2: No. 1 Kentucky vs. No. 4 Illinois-Chicago (postponed)
Game 2: No. 1 Kentucky vs. No. 4 Illinois-Chicago, 10 a.m.
Game 3: Notre Dame vs. Game 2 winner, noon
Game 4: Michigan vs. Game 2 loser, 2:30 p.m.
Game 5: Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 winner, 5 p.m.
Game 6: Game 3 winner vs. Game 5 winner, noon
Game 7 (if necessary): Game 6 winner vs. Game 6 loser, 2:30 p.m.