Softball

Junior third baseman Madison Uden's home run in the third inning hit some energy into the Michigan softball team.

It was a long drive from Ann Arbor to Mount Pleasant. Many players had class earlier in the day. The atmosphere wasn’t energetic.

Madison Uden changed that.

The Michigan softball team has launched 12 home runs en route to seven consecutive victories during its home stand.

Yes, the influx of home runs has come against weaker pitching staffs than the Wolverines saw in their previous non-conference slate. But the fact that eight of Hutchins’ regulars flexed pop in their bat over a stretch of just seven games suggests it isn’t a fluke.

Senior designated player Mackenzie Nemitz launched a home run on her birthday.

Walking up to the booming guitar solo from Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” with the momentum of her team’s 4-0 home-field lead behind her Sunday, Nemitz started her at-bat by taking two high balls. She stepped back, readjusted her grip and lifted her bat for the third time. A moment went by. And then the pitch.

Nemitz struck the ball, and it flew.

Junior right-fielder Haley Hoogenraad led a defensively-sound Michigan outfield against Nebraska last weekend.

There is one clear difference between the No. 25 Michigan softball team and Nebraska: One’s outfield performed well in Sunday’s contest and one dropped the ball.

Sophomore left-hander Meghan Beaubien came close to perfection in the circle once again.

When an opposing lineup comes to Alumni Field mired in a slump, the last pitcher it wants to see is Meghan Beaubien.

Coming into the weekend, the sophomore left-hander had already posted stellar numbers at home — 23 strikeouts, zero walks and .140 batting average against across 16.1 innings — for a Michigan softball team that has now won seven straight games on its own turf.

Junior third baseman Madison Uden believes her struggles at the plate are behind her.

When the Michigan softball team made its way southwest for the Arizona State Invitational last month, Madison Uden looked forward to her homecoming. The road trip gave the junior third baseman a chance to take the field just 30 minutes away from her hometown of Glendale, Ariz.

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With two outs and bases loaded, junior third baseman Madison Uden stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the first inning. Already, it was clear that the No. 25 Michigan softball team would have no problem getting runners on base.

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In the moment they made history, it was business as usual for the Michigan softball coaching trio of Carol Hutchins, Bonnie Tholl and Jennifer Brundage.

Sophomore Natalia Rodriguez leads the Michigan softball team in stolen bases.

At this point in last year’s season, Rodriguez had stolen just three bases. By the end of the season, she had succeeded on 10 of just 12 attempts. She is on track to far outpace that number this season. Rodriguez sets the table for the Wolverines, who have stolen 25 bases on 30 attempts this season.

Freshman outfielder Lexie Blair recently won Big Ten Player and Freshman of the Week honors after posting a .900 on base percentage last weekend

The freshman outfielder left the weekend with a .875 batting average and earned Big Ten Player and Freshman of the Week honors for her first home performance against Kent State last weekend. Performing almost perfectly offensively, Blair added a grand slam and six RBI to secure an 18-1 run rule victory over the Flash.