Hansen Blasts Softball Through Western Michigan, 4-0
May 4, 2011
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Senior Lindsey Hansen blasted her 19th homer of the season in the third inning to give the Michigan State softball team (24-23) a 4-0 win over in-state foe Western Michigan (18-25) on Wednesday, May 4 at Secchia Stadium.
"I thought today was one of our best all-around games in a while," said MSU head coach Jacquie Joseph. "We had solid defense, great production at the plate and a strong pitching. At times, Cassee (Layne) may have let the batter get away from her, but for the most part, she stayed in front of them with key counts. Lindsey (Hansen) continues to impress me with her play at the plate and in the field. Her home run today was one that arrived high in the zone. I would have liked to have seen her take the pitch, but she has the ability to make the most out of any pitch thrown and turn it into a positive situation. Defensively, she is making plays that are simply amazing. She has done a nice job embracing the leadership role she is in, and making the most out of any situation and not pressing at the plate."
Junior Ali Grant was the first to reach base in the bottom of the third off a throwing error by the WMU pitcher. Classmate Lori Padilla followed with a walk to give MSU runners first and second. With a 1-1 count, Hansen saw a pitch high in the zone and turned on the ball, putting the ball over the left field fence and into the Red Cedar River. Hansen's 41st blast of her career gave the Green and White the early 3-0 over the Broncos.
Freshman Cassee Layne earned the start for MSU against Western Michigan. Layne remained poised and in the zone, until she ran into trouble in the top of the third.
WMU saw its first two batters of the inning reach base with back-to-back singles. Elisha Handshoe led off the inning with a shot to right field, followed by a single from Allie Carlson through the left side. Following a wild pitch which moved Handshoe and Carlson up one base each, Michelle Bendewald hit into a fielder's choice, causing Handshoe to be thrown out at home by Hansen. The second and third opportunity quickly became a first and second situation. Layne proceeded to get the next two batters to ground out and then fly out, ending the inning for the Spartans.
Both starting pitchers opened the first two innings with no-hitters; however each had it broken up in the third inning by the opposite team.
The Broncos had an additional scoring chance in the sixth inning, but Layne remained unscathed as she pitched her eighth complete-game shutout of the season.
WMU looked for seventh inning heroics, but two stellar defensive plays by the Spartans put the first two batters down in order. The final out of the game came with the batter striking out swinging.
Freshman Sarah Bowling came in for MSU in the sixth as a pinch hitter. With no one on base, Bowling saw a 2-2 count and put the ball opposite field over the right field fence for her fourth home run of the season.
Layne improved her record on the year to 11-14 with her complete game win for MSU. Layne recorded five strikeouts while allowing no runs on five hits. Of her 112 pitches, 81 of them were strikes.
For the Broncos, Meredith Whitney suffered her first loss in eight games, falling to 10-12 on the season. Whitney allowed three runs on one hit, striking out seven batters faced. Kayla Houston pitched the final 2.0 innings in relief and allowed one run on three hits.
The Spartans close out non-conference action tomorrow (May 5) with a 4 p.m. contest against Eastern Michigan in Secchia Stadium.
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