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Maryland baseball edges Michigan, 5-4, to clinch series win

In a tight game, Will Watson’s home run and eighth-inning single helped back strong bullpen work.

maryland baseball Sung Min Kim/Testudo Times

In a game that see-sawed back and forth, the Terps were able to push across a run in the eighth to win 5-4. Will Watson had a home run and a key single, two of only six hits for the Terps. But Maryland’s pen was able to shut down the Wolverines over the last four frames in a tight game.

With the win, the Terps win the series and go for the sweep on Sunday.

Both teams played a bit sloppy

The Wolverines drew blood with two out top of the first, when Michael Brdar scored after Marty Costes bobbled a double. That lead proved to be short-lived. In the bottom of the inning, Will Watson hit a sac fly that tied the score.

Things got a bit tense in the top of the second. Johnny Slater lined a single to right and Harrison Wenson was hit by a pitch. A bunt moved up the runners, and a walk filled the bases. Ako Thomas flew out to right to put the Wolverines up 2-1. Meanwhile, Michigan starter Ryan Nutof settled down and retired the side in the second and third innings.

Michigan tacked on another run, this time in a questionable fashion. Wenson led off the fourth with a single to right. Wenson advanced to third after an off-base throw from Lee gave him an extra base after Jimmy Kerr hit a slow grounder. Jonathan Engelmann hit a grounder back to Bloom, who threw to first for the out. But Wenson took off for home and he was ruled safe on a close throw.

In the bottom of the inning, Madison Nickens singled to center, and advanced on a wild pitch. Kevin Biondic walked. With Lee batting, the Terps executed a double steal. Lee then hit a grounder up the middle that Thomas knocked down, but then couldn’t come up with the ball. Nickens and Biondic scored to tie the score.

Louisiana lightning propels Terps to the win

Michigan took back the lead in the top of the fifth. Brdar bunted for a hit and Lugbauer singled to right. Slater dragged a bunt for a safety squeeze that plated Brdar.

In the bottom of the sixth Watson drove a pitch for a home run that tied the score.

Ryan Hill relieved Bloom to start the sixth. He pitched two scoreless innings. Andrew Miller took the hill in the eighth and kept Michigan off the board.

Dunn got aboard via an infield hit in the bottom of the eighth. One out later Watson lined a rope to left field that Lewis dove for but couldn’t make the catch; Dunn motored to third. Nickens hit a fly to medium right, and Dunn was able to score.

Ryan Selmer came on in the top of the ninth. Brdar sent a long drive to right center that Jancarski lepat for and made a spectacular catch on. Lugbauer singled just past the diving Dunn. But Selmer got the next batter to ground into a 3UA-6 double play.

Andrew Miller got the win to move to 1-0, with Ryan Selmer getting his third save.

Maryland is now 15-7 (2-0 Big Ten), and will play the series finale Sunday at 1 p.m.