Maryland crushed in slugfest against Michigan, will face Indiana in elimination game

In a much higher-scoring affair than Thursday night’s nail biter against Indiana, Maryland’s pitching struggled, and the Terps fell on the losing side of Friday night’s (and early Saturday morning’s) contest with Michigan. A mix of messy defense and a persistent Michigan lineup got to Maryland starter Ryan Ramsey early and often, leading to the Terps’ eventual 15-8 loss.

Highlighted by Michigan sluggers Matt Frey and Riley Bertram, the Wolverines took advantage of poor defense and four walks from Ramsey to explode for nine runs between the third and fourth frames. Frey and Bertram combined to drive in seven of those runs on seven total hits.

While the two Wolverine bats provided most of the ammo, Ramsey’s final line shows how close the game really was when it came down to defense. The southpaw pitched 3 1/3 innings, but of the 10 runs Michigan scored with him on the mound, just six of them were earned.

The crucial play of the night came with two outs in the third inning, as Nick Lorusso threw away what would’ve been the final out on a Tito Flores grounder. The throwing error ultimately allowed three of Michigan’s runs to score — a key difference-maker to the game’s outcome.

Graduate student Nick Robinson entered the fourth following Ramsey’s exit to extinguish the Wolverines’ offense, but the damage had been done. Robinson pitched a season-high 2 2/3 innings with the only damage against him being a Flores solo home run and an inherited run in the seventh .

Outside of the Flores home run, Robinson held the Wolverines at bay long enough for the Terps to form a rally throughout the middle innings. After a scoreless first inning, the Terps were scoring at least once in five of the next six innings.

The bulk of that scoring was courtesy of Troy Schreffler, who continues to be one of the most potent bats in the Terps’ lineup. The junior blasted a solo home run in the third and picked up two more RBI on a double in the fifth.

Luke Shliger and Bobby Zmarzlak both drove in a pair of runs, and Kevin Keister crushed his own solo home run, but the Maryland bats just couldn’t keep up with Michigan’s.

The game was all but put to rest after stretch time, as Michigan bombarded redshirt junior Will Glock for three runs before he could escape the inning. With another five-run inning under its belt, Michigan had all the insurance it needed, cruising into the final two innings with a seemingly insurmountable seven-run lead.

The Terps didn’t have the energy in the late innings to match Michigan, and they ultimately went down quietly as the Wolverines move on to face the winner of Penn State/Iowa Saturday evening.

Now in a deep hole, the Terps will need to beat Indiana Saturday afternoon in a rematch of Thursday’s game in order to avoid elimination. That game is scheduled for roughly 40 minutes following the Penn State-Iowa game at 9:00 a.m EST.