BLUFFTON, S.C. - The University of Michigan-Dearborn softball team opened the 2018 season, splitting a pair of games against the University of South Carolina-Beaufort Sunday in Bluffton, S.C.
The Wolverines won a thrilling opener 2-1, getting the final out of the game on a play at the plate. The Sand Sharks, who have played 16 games already this season, won the finale 8-1, as the Wolverines open 2018 with a record of 1-1.
UM-Dearborn got on the board quick in game one, as senior Jordan Ewald (SR/Wixom, MI) doubled to right center, driving in junior Sarah Prashad (JR/Mississauga, Ontario) in the first inning. Ewald scored later in the inning on a sacrifice fly off the bat of senior Gina Verduzco (SR/Portage, MI).
USCB cut the Wolverine lead in half with a run in the fourth to make it 2-1. Both teams remained off the board the rest of the way. The Sand Sharks threatened in the seventh, but UM-Dearborn freshman Meaghan Markus (FR/Mattawan, MI) threw out the would-be tying run at the plate from centerfield on the final play of the game.
The Wolverines were held to four hits, while committing no errors. Verduzco, the UM-Dearborn all-time leader in pitching wins, innings and strikeouts, was strong in her first start of the season. She went the distance, allowing one run on seven hits, while striking out two in seven innings for the win.
In game two, USCB jumped out in front early with five runs in the first and held off the Wolverine offense for most of the contest. Prashad finished with two hits and a run scored in the loss.
Ashlynn Henderson (SO/Temecula, CA) took the loss, allowing six runs on six hits, while striking out one in 3.2 innings. Julie St. John (JR/Farmington, MI) finished the game, allowing two runs, one earned on three hits and struck out two.
UM-Dearborn opens the 2018 Fastpitch Dreams Spring Classic in a doubleheader against No. 5 Brenau University at 10 am Monday in Myrtle Beach, S.C.