Hawkeyes Win at Nebraska in Series Opener
April 6, 2012
LINCOLN, Neb. -- The University of Iowa baseball team won at Nebraska Friday night in the first ever Big Ten meeting between the two programs, 4-3. It marks Iowa's first ever victory at Nebraska. The Hawkeyes (13-14, 4-3) have won three-straight contests and four of their last five overall after taking the series opener. The game, played at Hawks Field, was the first of a three game set.
"It was a great team effort," said head coach Jack Dahm. "It always starts on the mound. Jarred Hippen did a tremendous job and (Nick) Brown was great closing it out. We fell behind and our guys showed no quit. We came up with some great offensive execution and some timely hitting, led by Jake Mangler; it is great to have him back in the line-up. Defensively, we played tremendous. We are starting to play some pretty good baseball and our confidence is starting to grow."
The Iowa offense, led by senior Mike McQuillan and freshman Jake Mangler, out-hit Nebraska, 9-8. McQuillan recorded his 10th multi-hit game of the year, going 3-for-5 with a run scored and two RBI. Mangler, making his first start due to injury since March 16 (Army), finished 2-for-4 for two RBI, registering his fifth multi-hit contest of the season and his third multiple-RBI game.
For the first time in its last seven games, Iowa did not score before its opponent as the Huskers pushed across single runs in the bottom of the third and fourth innings to grab a 2-0 lead.
The Hawkeyes responded in a big way in the top of the fifth, scoring four runs on three hits. Keith Brand led off the inning and reached on a Nebraska throwing error. Eric Toole used a bunt single to place runners at first and third. Junior Andrew Host was hit by a pitch to load the bases. McQuillan then singled up the middle to score two runs and even the score up at 2-2. With no outs and runners at first and second, Jake Yacinich executed a sacrifice bunt to move the runners up a base. With two away and the runners still at second and third, Mangler delivered a key two-out single through the right side to put Iowa up for good at 4-2.
The Huskers added a single tally in the fifth, cutting the Iowa lead to 4-3, but it was not enough, as the visitors took the series opener.
Jarred Hippen earned his third victory of the season (3-3). The senior pitched seven and a third innings, allowing three runs on eight hits. He struck out six Huskers while allowing only one walk. Nick Brown closed out the final inning and two-thirds to seal the victory for Iowa. The senior earned his fifth save of the season while allowing no runs on zero hits. He struck out two Huskers.
Tom Lemke took the loss for Nebraska. He tossed four innings, allowing three runs on five hits.
The Hawkeyes committed zero errors in the win. The Black and Gold are 8-1 this season when playing errorless baseball.
Iowa and Nebraska continue their three-game set Saturday. The Huskers and Hawkeyes will play at 2:05 p.m. on Saturday and will conclude their series at 1:05 p.m. on Sunday.