Lou Allan laced a ball into right field. As the senior first baseman made her way around first, she slid into second, proceeding to celebrate what she believed to be a long double.
She then looked around and saw the umpires waving their index fingers in the air, signaling a home run and extending the No. 22 Michigan softball team’s lead to 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning. The Wolverines eventually went on to run away with the game, beating Maryland 8-0 via a five-inning run-rule.
“(The home run) was really weird,” Allan said. “My mindset was just like … ‘I’m going to sprint, and I’m going to get to second base and it’s going to be a double,’ … (When I saw the umpires) I really just got super excited and just jogged the rest of the way.”
After sprinting around half the diamond, Allan took in the sights and sounds of Alumni Field as she jogged the rest of the way home. The trot, however, didn’t turn out to be her only one of the afternoon.
In the bottom of the third inning, Allan returned to the plate for her second at-bat of the game, this time looking to build Michigan’s 3-0 lead. And she did just that.
Allan clobbered a 1-0 pitch from left-hander Haley Ellefson, propelling the softball high over the left-field wall. Unlike her first blast, she took her time rounding all the bases, feeding off the excitement of her dugout.
“I knew right when I hit it off my bat. I could feel it,” Allan said. “It definitely hit the sweet spot, and I knew it was going right away.”
Only two-plus innings in, the solo shot triggered an instant pitching change for the Terrapins, their second of the game. The Wolverines’ offensive attack, led by Allan’s two home runs, caused grave trouble for Maryland’s pitchers and ultimately forced an early end to the contest.
Allan’s power-hitting has come alive as of late. She entered the game tied for the most home runs on the team with four, and now she leads the team with six. Her production is highlighted by a powerful series last weekend in Columbus where she sent three balls over the fence in the four-game series at Ohio State.
The homestand against Maryland did not begin smoothly for Allan. Through the first two games of the four-game set, Allan — the team leader in RBI with 19 — was held hitless. She then went 1-3 in the third game of the series. Entering the final game, 1-7 on the weekend, Allan wasn’t feeling like herself. Saturday night, she spoke to her dad for some words of wisdom.
“He was like, ‘Yeah, you know it just looks like you’re a little bent over and you’re trying a little too hard,’ ” she recalled. “So he’s definitely going to take credit for those two home runs today.”
The conversation clearly played off, as Allan shook off the slow start to the weekend and powered Michigan to a Sunday afternoon victory and series sweep.