BLOOMINGTON — The sun broke through the clouds in
the late innings yesterday as the Michigan baseball team put the
finishing touches on its 16-5 victory over Indiana in the final
contest of a four-game series at Sembower Field. It was
Michigan’s third straight win after dropping the series
opener on Saturday.

Despite falling behind by three runs after two innings, Michigan
(16-12 Big Ten, 28-23 overall) used a three-run third to tie the
score at three. An impressive eight-run sixth inning put the
Wolverines ahead for good, while the team’s five additional
runs in the eighth made the final tally laughable.

Freshman Eric Rose connected for his first career home run
during the third inning to start Michigan’s offensive
outburst. Second baseman Chris Getz’s double and first
baseman Kyle Bohm’s single soon after knotted the score and
kept Michigan in the game.

“It felt tremendous,” Rose said of hishomer.
“I finally put a good swing on (the ball, but) the power game
isn’t really my game. That hitting is contagious. Once you
get going, the team starts rolling with it.”

Michael Penn pitched five innings of relief for starter Phil
Tognetti, who was yanked after giving up three runs in the first
two innings, including two home runs. Penn quieted down the Indiana
bats, holding 21 Hoosier batters to just one run on five hits
before Craig Murray and Jeff Niemiec took over to close out the
game.

After Indiana committed two errors early in the sixth frame, the
hits started coming again. Third baseman A.J. Scheidt, shortstop
Leif Mahler, left fielder Brad Roblin, Rose, Getz and designated
hitter Brandon Roberts all collected knocks off Indiana pitchers
Graeme McFarland and Matt Saba as Michigan batted around the
lineup. Mahler’s single to right drove in Roberts and
Scheidt, and when the dust settled, it proved to be the winning
hit.

“(The hit) was really exciting,” Mahler said.
“It was great to finally be able to help out the
team.”

Penn’s confidence got a major boost from the Michigan
hitting explosion in the sixth.

“These guys are definitely capable of doing that type of
stuff all the time,” Penn said. “They finally busted
out at a good time … good things are happening right now. You
know that if you give up a couple runs early — if you can
just hold them down for a little bit — these guys are going
to break out eventually, and it’s going to come together for
you. You always know you’re in the ballgame with these
guys.”

Michigan coach Rich Maloney was extremely pleased with his
team’s all-around play.

“It was really nice to see us finally break out in the
hitting department,” Maloney said. “It was a good
confidence-builder for us. Penn answered the bell and then our bats
started to get going a little bit.”

Maloney is glad to see his squad peaking near the end of the
year.

“This is the time you want to be playing your best
baseball,” he said.

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