April 25, 2004
IOWA CITY – The University of Iowa softball team split a Big Ten doubleheader with the Ohio State Buckeyes Sunday afternoon at Pearl Field. Ohio State took the first game, 5-3 in nine innings, while Iowa rebounded to take game two 4-0.
The Hawkeyes are 33-18, with an 11-3 mark in the conference. Ohio State is 29-20 and 5-9 in the Big Ten.
In game one, the Hawkeyes took a 3-0 lead into the top of the seventh inning, but were unable to hold on. Chelsea Baker led off with a solo home run, then a walk and a single put two runners on and caused Iowa to make a pitching change, bringing in Ali Arnold to replace Lisa Birocci. A single then loaded the bases and a passed ball allowed the Buckeye to cut the score to 3-2. Arnold then walked the next two batters, brining in the tying run.
In extra innings, the Hawkeye bats were silent and unable to pick up a hit. In the top of the ninth, Ashely Cutcliff hit a towering home run over the scoreboard in center and Christina Douglas had an RBI single to give Ohio State a 5-3 lead and the win.
Iowa responded in game two jumping out of the gates early with a pair of runs in the top of the first inning. After Natalie Johnson drew a leadoff walk, Birocci brought her around with her team-leading fifth home run.
The Hawkeyes got some insurance runs in the fourth with a two-run home run off the bat of Emily Gerlick.
Birocci cruised through the game, allowing only three hits and striking out six in going the distance.
Iowa will hit the road Wednesday night and play a single game against Western Illinois. First pitch is set for 5 p.m. in Macomb, IL.