Cal Claims Regional Crown With 1-0 Win vs. Michigan
May 18, 2003
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - The No. 2 seed California University Golden Bears defeated the No. 3 seed University of Michigan Wolverines today (May 18) 1-0 in the championship game of the NCAA Region 7 tournament at U-M's Alumni Field. Cal scored the lone run of the game in the second inning on a sacrifice fly from Chelsea Spencer and extended its scoreless innings streak to 47 postseason innings to earn the victory. Cal starter Kelly Anderson pitched seven shutout innings, allowing five hits and striking out six batters.
Michigan recorded the first hit of the game in the bottom of the first inning, but was unable to advance the runner and the game remained scoreless after one. Cal responded with a walk by Veronica Nelson to lead off the second inning. A double from Haley Woods advanced the runner to third and then Spencer's sacrifice fly to center field brought home the runner, giving Cal a 1-0 lead.
Both teams displayed solid defense over the next two innings, with neither club able to produce more than one hit. Then in the bottom of the fourth inning, Michigan threatened to tie the game. Melinda Moulden started the offense with a single down the left field line followed by a double from Marissa Young. Moulden was waved home from first on the play, but a strong throw from right field threw her out on her way to home, leaving the score 1-0.
The solid defense continued until Michigan had one last chance to win the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. After Young flied out to lead off the inning, Monica Shock walked and Jessica Merchant singled to put runners on first and second with one out. Cal's defense remained true to form however earning a strike out and a ground out to preserve the 1-0 victory.
With the victory Cal (45-18) win the NCAA Region 7 Championship and moves on to the Women's College World Series. Michigan (44-16) is eliminated and concludes its season.