March isn’t just for basketball—Wolverines are taking titles and making history across the athletic campus. Put the March Madness bracket down and celebrate what the Maize and Blue are doing in everything from gymnastics to softball.
Women’s Gymnastics Take 2015 Big Ten Championship
The No. 6-ranked U-M women’s gymnastics team posted its second-highest score in program history (197.825) to win its second consecutive Big Ten title on March 21 at the Crisler Center. The team has now won 23 total Big Ten titles in its history. A video from the team’s official account recaps the victory.
ICYMI: We’re Big Ten champs! Here’s highlights and reaction from last yesterday’s epic day at Crisler. http://t.co/uzaGvPlRpB
— Michigan Gymnastics (@umichwgym) March 22, 2015
With the outcome of the meet coming down to the final rotation, Michigan put together a strong performance on balance beam to capture the championship. Among other honors, five U-M gymnasts were named to the All-Championships team: Nicole Artz, Brianna Brown, Briley Casanova, Sachi Sugiyama, and Talia Chiarelli.
- Artz was the best gymnast on the floor, winning the all-around crown with a career-high 39.650
- Brianna Brown tied for Freshman of the Year
- Bev Plocki was named the Big Ten women’s gymnastics Coach of the Year for the 11th time.
Softball Coach Carol Hutchinson Wins 1,400
Softball coach Carol Hutchinson made history when she became just the third coach to reach 1,400 wins in NCAA softball history. She also is the winningest coach in U-M history—in any sport. The 14-time Coach of the Year earned the victory against the Buckeyes in Columbus, Ohio.
Hutchins led the Wolverines to a 20-0 mercy of the Buckeyes on March 22. She explained one aspect of her coaching style to Michigan Alumnus magazine in summer 2014: “So, the lesson (learned) as a young coach is to keep your kids loose. Don’t let them get too focused on the outcome; you’ve got to enjoy the process. When they’re smiling, relaxed, and confident, they’re going to play better.”
Women’s Tennis Handles the Badgers
The Varsity Tennis Center saw women’s tennis beat the Badgers 6-1 in their seventh straight win.
- Michigan has won 21 straight Big Ten regular-season matches.
- U-M is now 27-23 overall against Wisconsin and has won 11 straight over the Badgers.
- With a singles win, Sarah Lee has tied Brooke Bolender for second on the all-time list with 112.
- Alex Najarian won her seventh straight singles match.
“I still think we need to get better,” head coach Ronnie Bernstein told MGoBlue. “As the season gets toward the end, we want to peak at the end.”
Women’s Basketball Advances
Michigan is headed to the third round of the WNIT after Monday’s 74-58 win at Toledo. The team tweeted a highlight video of the night.
— Michigan Basketball (@umichwbball) March 24, 2015
Freshman Katelynn Flaherty and sophomore Siera Thompson combined for 45 at Toledo’s Savage Arena. Despite troubles on the road this season, the team went on a 16-0 run to close the first half.
“I’m so proud of the way both Siera and Katelynn have responded,” head coach Kim Barnes Arico said. “[Siera] didn’t start the last two games and that’s something she’s not accustomed to.”
Michigan will host Missouri in the third round of the WNIT on Thursday at the Crisler Center. Students with an MCard receive free admission.