Indiana Daily Student

IU softball to take on Michigan in first home game of season Friday

<p>The IU softball team huddles before a game March 16, 2019. The Hoosiers will play Michigan on Friday at home. </p>

The IU softball team huddles before a game March 16, 2019. The Hoosiers will play Michigan on Friday at home.

IU softball is back in Bloomington after playing its first 12 games of the season at the Sleepy Hollow Sports Complex in Leesburg, Florida. This will be the first game the Hoosiers have played at Andy Mohr Field since a 1-0 victory against the Miami University Redhawks on March 10, 2020.

IU will start its first series back on campus against No. 25 Michigan on Friday. 

The series consists of four games that will be played at Andy Mohr Field. The first game will be at 4 p.m. Friday, followed by a doubleheader Saturday. The first game will be played at noon, while the next game will follow at 2 p.m. The series will wrap up with a noon game Sunday. All games will broadcast on Big Ten Network+.

Michigan, currently 9-3, swept Purdue and Iowa in its first four games this year. Senior pitcher Megan Beaubien tied the team record during the season opener in Leesburg with 19 strikeouts during a 4-0 win against the Boilermakers. 

Junior pitcher Alex Storako threw 16 strikeouts the next game against Purdue. Junior outfielder Lexie Blair also recorded three hits and drove in four runs during the series against Iowa. 

Related: [IU softball swept by Northwestern, sweeps Rutgers over weekend]

This won’t be the first time IU takes on a nationally ranked team. IU has games against Minnesota and Northwestern on its resume.

One trick IU softball has up its sleeve is senior outfielder Gabbi Jenkins, who leads the team in the stolen bases category with 12. She could capitalize on one or two bases during this series and drive the momentum the team needs throughout its four games.

The Hoosiers’ pitching rotation of senior Emily Goodin, junior Natalie Foor and freshmen Amber Linton and Macy Montgomery can match up against Michigan’s pitching duo of Beaubien and Storako. 

Key offensive contributors such as junior infielder Hannah Davis, senior outfielder Tete Hart, freshman outfielder Aaliyah Andrews and junior utility player Juvia Davis, who all have the highest batting averages on the team, have been able to capitalize on great pitching from other teams as well. 

The Hoosiers are not favored to win this series. If the offense can start strong and rotation remains tough to take on, IU could come out of this series with a series split or victory.

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