Sunday's senior day at the Maryland softball stadium was the nicest of the three days in terms of weather. And, if you were Michigan sophomore pitcher Megan Betsa, it was a beautiful day to take the field. The Terps had their strongest effort against the fourth ranked Wolverines but were no match for Betsa who hurled a no-hitter and stuck out 15 on the way.
After Maryland's senior day ceremonies, the final game of the Terrapins' series against the fourth ranked Michigan Wolverines go off to a somewhat different start than the two prior contests. Kaitlyn 'KK' Schmeiser s=made her final start in the home circle for Maryland and for the first time in the series held the potent Michigan offense scoreless through the first three innings.
The Wolverines scratched out a run in the top of the fourth when Kelly Christner led off the inning with a hard grounder that got all the way to the fence for a double. Maryland center fielder Kylie Datil misplayed the ball allowing Christner to take third. She came in to score when Kelly Susalla lined KK's next pitch past the drawn in infield into right.
Unfortunately for Terps fans, Michigan ace and starter Megan Betsa was plowing through Maryland's lineup even more effectively than she had in her three hit effort Friday afternoon. Betsa held the Terps hitless through the first five innings allowing just a second inning walk to senior left fielder Erin Pronobis. However, Betsa was not only holding Maryland hitless she was almost holding them contactless recording strikeouts on nine of the first 15 outs.
Schmeiser escaped a jam in the sixth when Lauren Sweet doubled to right with two out but KK got out of the inning on a routine fly to center. Mandy Gardner became Maryland's second base runner of the day when she drew a walk leading off the Terrapins sixth. However, Betsa continued her mastery of the Terps' lineup striking out the side to increase her total to a dozen.
KK finished off a special senior day effort retiring the Wolverines in order in the seventh. The Terps trailed by one as Betsa looked to finish off the no hitter in the bottom of the inning. She started the inning as she'd ended the sixth striking out Corey Schwartz and Pronobis.
Senior catcher Shannon Bustillos came up with Maryland's last chance to slow the momentum of the Michigan sophomore and break up the no hitter. Betsa won the battle getting Bustillos to look at a third strike finishing the game by striking out the final nine Terrapins batters.
The Terps will travel to Michigan State for three games to close the regular season beginning Friday.