Big Inning Dooms Hawkeyes
March 18, 2013
WICHITA, Kan. -- One big inning -- a seven-run fifth -- sent Nebraska-Omaha to a 7-6 victory and series win over the University of Iowa baseball team on Monday at Eck Stadium in Wichita, Kan.
"We gave up too many free bases," said UI head coach Jack Dahm. "We had the one bad inning on the mound and didn't help our pitcher defensively. You have to stay away from the big innings.
"We had two big innings leading into this series, and we gave up three this weekend, and that's why we wound up 1-2. It's a disappointing weekend for us. I expected us to play better."
Iowa got off to a solid start, building a 4-0 advantage over the first four innings. The Hawkeyes pushed three runs across the plate in the third courtesy of a Jake Mangler RBI single and a two-run triple by Taylor Zeutenhorst. Iowa then tacked on its fourth run when Eric Toole scored on a fielder's choice ground out off the bat of Jake Yacinich.
After going to the bullpen with two outs in the top of the fourth, UNO got to sophomore reliever Nick Hibbing in the fifth. The Mavericks tallied seven runs on four hits, a hit by pitch, a walk and an error. Four UNO players had RBIs in the inning, and UNO had a pair of extra base hits, including a two-run double by Cole Gruber.
Iowa cut into the deficit, making it a 7-6 game by pushing two runs across the plate in the bottom of the sixth. Sophomore Kris Goodman started the rally with a two-out walk before Yacinich singled up the middle to put two runners on. Junior Keith Brand reached via a hit by pitch before sophomore Taylor Kaufman welcomed reliever Dylan Casey with a two-run double down the left field line.
That was the extent of Iowa's rally, as the team went hitless over the final three frames, while leaving three men on base.
"I was disappointing with our at-bats the final three innings when we were down by a run," said Dahm. "Let's make something happen and put some pressure on them, but we didn't have good at-bats there."
Hibbing took the loss, allowing seven runs (three earned) on three hits and three walks in one inning of work. Senior Ricky Sandquist started the game, holding the Mavericks scoreless over 3 2/3. He gave up three hits and had two strikeouts to three walks.
Kaufman and senior Andrew Hanse toss the final 4 1/3 innings, allowing three hits and posting five strikeouts.
Iowa pounded out 12 hits -- its sixth game with 10 or more hits. Goodman led the way going 3-for-3 with two runs scored, while Kaufman (2-for-5, 2 RBIs, 1 R), Mangler (2-for-5, 1 R, 1 RBI), Zeutenhorst (2-for-4, 2 RBIs) all had multi-hit games. The performance was Goodman's seventh multi-hit and fifth three-hit game this season. Yacinich went 1-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to seven games.
Iowa (8-8) is set to make its home debut Wednesday, hosting Coe College at Duane Banks Field beginning at 4:05 p.m. (CT).
"We need to get back to the basics, and get back to what made us successful in the past," said Dahm.