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Michigan comes back late against Bowling Green, wins fourth straight

Torehan Sharman/Daily
Junior Anthony Toth plays against Purdue on Apr 10 2010. Michigan won 6-4. Buy this photo

BY ZAK PYZIK
Daily Sports Writer
Published April 14, 2010

With five different Wolverines hitting a home run in the last two games, it's clear that the strength of their lineup has helped them win as of late. The most recent victory, the 11th in 13 games, was yesterday's 8-5 victory over Bowling Green at Ray Fisher Stadium of the Wilpon Complex.

Michigan took its first lead in the bottom of the first inning after an RBI double from redshirt junior Anthony Toth. The Falcons tied it up in the second and it stayed that way until Bowling Green scored three times in the fifth inning to go up 4-1.

But the Wolverines kept their heads up and their bats strong. In the sixth frame, Derek Dennis tallied an RBI double, but it was Toth who surprised the crowd when he cranked his first career home run out of the park to bring in Dennis from second.

After the game, Toth made a joking jab at his teammate.

“I want to thank Tyler Burgoon for my inspiration for my first home run,” Toth said. “He inspired me by telling me I am never going to get one. He tells me that every single day, whether we have a game or not, so I’m glad I got that monkey off my back.”

Bowling Green couldn’t keep up with the Michigan surge, and it was sophomore outfielder Mike Kittle who sealed the deal when he rocked his own first career homer in the eighth.

“It was thanks to the wind I think (that Toth) and I both got our first home runs today,” Kittle said. “It’s really just a race for everyone in the lineup to get one before Dufek. He was our home run leader last year and he’s still got the goose-egg this year.”

But it wasn’t just the batters who proved solid for Michigan. Junior pitcher Kolby Wood replaced redshirt junior pitcher Matt Gerbe in the fifth and threw two strikeouts to kick off the inning. He only allowed three hits in the two and a half innings he pitched.

“It was a nice rally to come back. Kolby gave us a little bit on the bump which was good,” Michigan coach Rich Maloney said. “I felt that we battled, stayed the course and found a way to win.”

Afterward, Burgoon was called from the bullpen to send the Falcons home. Burgoon recorded the save after tallyinh an impressive four strikeouts in five batters.

“You have to find ways (like pitching) to win, much different ways, if you want to be a champion,” Maloney said. “We’ve been finding ways to win which is a good thing. Hopefully we can keep it going. They never give up and we stayed the course, we could have panicked, but we didn’t. It was good to get these two midweek wins.”

The Wolverines' comeback was on the strength of its depth in the bullpen and in its lineup, just like it has been in most games lately.

“It was a big comeback,” Toth said. “We come into this midweek games knowing that our opponents come in here and they circle us on the schedule. So, credit to Bowling Green they played really hard and we came out a little lackadaisical but we were lucky enough to come back fighting and we got a good win, so we’ll take it.”