SPARTAN SYNOPSIS

Michigan State scored five runs in the first inning and posted a 9-1 win over Memphis in five innings in day two of the Littlewood Classic. The Spartan bats produced 12 hits, including four players with two base hits on the day.  MSU faces Northern Iowa in its second Saturday game  (6:30 ET) as the tournament continues.

 

Kristina Zalewski struck out six to improve to 2-2 on the year, and MSU moves to 5-3 overall. The redshirt sophomore scattered four hits, all singles, and walked two.

The Spartans won with 12 base hits, 11 of them singles, and also benefitted from two Memphis errors. This was the second meeting of the teams within a week, as MSU earned a 5-3 win over the Tigers last weekend in Fort Myers at FGCU.

 

TOP PERFORMERS 

Kristina Zalewski (2-2) struck out six, scattering four hits and allowing one earned run.

 

Lea Foerster smacked her third double of the season and went 2-for-4 with an RBI.

 

Celeste Wood continued her hot start to her college career, smacking a pair of singles in her first two at-bats and going 2-for-3.

 

Lindsey Besson went 2-for-3

 

Kaitlyn Eveland went 1-for-3 with a pair of RBI, while Sarah Gutknechtalso had a pair of runs batted in and a 1-for-2 performance at the plate.

STATS AND STORYLINES

 

MSU fired right out of the gate, sending 10 batters to the plate and plating five runs on five hits, all coming with two outs. The biggest hit came from the bat of Kaitlyn Eveland, who had a two-RBI single with the bases loaded, and she got another run home when her steal of second forced an error on the catcher when she threw the ball into center field.

 

The Tigers got a single run back in the top of the second,using a walk and a single to bring home their first run of the game. Zalewski stranded a pair of runners when she got out of the inning.

 

MSU got another run on the board in the second. Freshman Bayleigh Wisher entered the game to pitch for Memphis, and walked leadoff batterMcKenzie Long. Long moved to third on a single by Celeste Wood (her second of the day), and came home on a sac fly by Sarah Gutknecht.

 

The Spartans continued to be opportunistic and come up with timely hits, pushing across a run in the bottom of the third. A one-out walk toShanin Thomas was followed by four consecutive singles, and a throwing error by the right fielder brought Kassidy Kujawa home for a six-run Spartan lead.

 

Zalewski issued a one-out walk to Hannah Harrell, who stole second and advanced to third on an error in the top of the fifth. Zalewski got out of the inning by getting Brittany Seale to line out back to the circle and striking out Lindsey Stickrod, her sixth strikout of the game.

 

MSU got its first run-rule game when it scored twice in the bottom of the fifth inning. After a leadoff walk to Shanin Thomas, a single by Kassidy Kujawa and double by Lea Foerster and sac fly by Long pushed MSU’s lead to 9-1, ending the contest.

 

Shanin Thomas started at DP and was issued three walks. It was one shy of the school record of four, and the 24th time in school history one player had three walks in a game. The last time it happened was against Ohio State on April 10, 2015, when now-student assistant coach McKinzie Freimuth had three free passes.

 

MSU was 7-for-11 at the plate with two outs, and 5-for-10 with runners in scoring position.

 

The Spartans scored nine runs on 12 hits for the second time in three games, both season highs.