Hawkeyes Open Big Ten Play In Indiana

March 29, 2007

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IOWA CITY – Iowa Opens Big Ten Play
The University of Iowa softball teams open Big Ten play Friday when they face Indiana in Bloomington at 2 p.m. The Hawkeyes and Hoosiers will face off again Saturday at 1 p.m. Iowa then travels to West Lafayette, IN, for a doubleheader against Purdue starting at 11 a.m. Sunday. All times listed are Central.

Hawkeyes on the Air
Iowa’s final 31 regular season games will be broadcast via the Internett at hawkeyesports.com. Jerry Kiwala or Rob Brooks will handle play-by-play commentary.

The broadcasts are free and can be found in the Hawkeye All-Access section.

Hawkeyes on the Web
Iowa softball fans can follow the Hawkeyes every week with Gametracker at hawkeyesports.com. Just click on the Gametracker link found on the softball schedule page.

McGlaughlin Powers Iowa Past Northern Illinois
Sophomore Colleen McGlaughlin hit a two-run home run to help Iowa defeat Northern Illinois, 4-2, Wednesday in DeKalb, IL. McGlaughlin hit a towering shot to straight-away center field with a strong wind blowing in.

After Northern Illinois took a 1-0 lead in the fourth, Iowa battled back to take a 3-1 lead in the sixth. Freshman Taylor Leichsenring scored the tying run, beating a throw from first base to home plate. McGlaughlin gave Iowa the lead with her home run.

Iowa tacked on another run in the seventh when junior Emily Nichols scored on an Erin Riemersma sacrifice fly.

Sophomore pitcher Brittany Weil picked up her sixth win of the season, throwing just over three innings of relief.

Iowa Wins Hawkeye Classic
Iowa claimed its own tournament title with a 4-0 record last weekend at the Hawkeye Classic. The Hawkeyes defeated South Dakota State (4-1), North Dakota State (3-0), Ball State (9-2) and Northern Illinois (2-0).

Super Sophomores vs. NDSU
Four sophomores led Iowa to a 3-0 win over North Dakota State last Saturday.

Erin Riemersma and Rachel West each hit home runs against the Bision. Riemersma’s long ball plated Colleen McGlaughlin, who singled earlier in the inning.

Brittany Weil threw a complete game shutout, striking out 10 and walking zero.

McGlaughlin Heats Up at Pearl
Sophomore Colleen McGlaughlin batted .583 (7-12) with two doubles, two RBI and three runs scored at the Hawkeye Classic last weekend.

McGlaughlin played both second and third base last weekend.

Weil Returns to Form
Sophomore pitcher Brittany Weil threw 21 innings without giving up an earned run in three games pitched at the Hawkeye Classic. Weil tossed three complete games and two shutouts while striking out 28 and walking only three.

The Garden Grove, CA, native is 6-1 with a 1.13 ERA since returning to the lineup March 13. She has four double-digit strikeout performances, including a career-high 15 K’s against BYU.

Nichols Ties Home Run Mark
Junior Emily Nichols tied Iowa’s career home run record with a solo home run against BYU on March 15.

Nichols is tied with former Hawkeye Alicia Gerlach, who hit 29 career home runs from 1999-02.

Nichols set Iowa’s single-season home run mark with 16 long balls as a freshman along with five as a sophomore. She currently has eight home runs this season.

Nichols vs. This Weekend’s Pitchers
Junior Emily Nichols has only faced one pitcher scheduled to throw this weekend. Nichols went 0-2 against Purdue’s Brooke Baker as a freshman in 2005.

Junior Emily Nichols leads the Hawkeyes in virtually every offensive category. Her team-best numbers include at bats (121), runs (28), hits (53), doubles (12), home runs (8), RBI (29), total bases (91), slugging percentage (.752) and on-base percentage (.474).

Leichsenring Earns Starting Spot
Freshman Taylor Leichsenring started in right field the past 14 games. She is batting .396 with one RBI and eight runs scored since moving to the starting role.

No Sophomore Slump
Sophomore Rachel West has come on strong in recent weeks.

West tallied a triple in three-straight games at the Buzz Classic and tallied four of her eight RBI at the NIST. She also hit her first career home run against San Jose State at the NIST.

The Burlington, IA, native collected 10 hits, including another triple, three RBI and sevn runs scored against Colorado State and at the Capital Classic.

West belted her second home run of the season and collected four hits at the Hawkeye Classic last weekend.

Quick on the Basepaths
As a team, Iowa has stolen 69 bases this season. Sophomore Rachel West leads the team with 17 stolen bases followed by sophomore Erin Riemersma with 11.

Sophomore Lindsey Digmann and senior Mindy Heidgerken have not been thrown out this season. Digmann and Heidgerken are a perfect 8-8.

Scoring Early and Often
The Hawkeyes are outscoring their opponents 37-16 in the first inning and 24-5 in the fifth inning of games this season.

Iowa is outscoring its opponents in every inning except the third and ninth innings.

Hitting Streak Snapped
Junior Emily Nichols’ school and Big Ten record hitting streak was snapped last weekend at the Capital Classic. Nichols failed to collect a hit against Mercer on March 16, ending her streak at 28 games.

Her 28-game hitting streak is also the seventh longest in NCAA history.

Ackerson Throws No-Hitter In Opener
Junior Stephanie Ackerson took full advantage of her first career start in the circle, tossing a five-inning no-hitter in Iowa’s season opener against Howard. The Clive, IA, native allowed only four Howard baserunners and struck out five.

Prior to the start against Howard, Ackerson had only thrown 11 innings in relief.

Iowa Extends Blevins’ Contract
University of Iowa Athletic Director Gary Barta announced that Gayle Blevins’ contract has been extended thru June 30, 2011.

Blevins is the all-time winningest coach in Iowa softball history and has led the Hawkeyes to four College World Series appearances, five Big Ten regular season titles and two Big Ten Tournament championships.

Hawkeyes Add Five Freshmen
Iowa welcomes a class of five freshmen to the 2007 squad. Katie Brown, Lindsey Digmann, Taylor Leichsenring, and Amanda Zust hail from Iowa while walk-on Heidi Daumen is from Illinois.

Brown and Zust will see time in the circle while Digmann will play scond base. Leichsenring is an outfielder and Daumen is a utility player who can catch or play first base.

Iowa Adds Two New Coaches
Jen Fried and Stacy May are new members of the Iowa coaching staff. Fried is a volunteer assistant and May is a student assistant.

Fried joins the staff from Swarthmore College in Media, PA, where she was an assistant coach from 2005-06. Her duties included designing and implementing daily practices for outfielders along with batting instruction.

Fried played both softball and soccer at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, PA. She was named the Centennial Conference Softball Player of the Year in 2004 and was an all-conference selection from 2001-04.

May was a four-year letterwinner at both third base and shortstop for Iowa from 2003-06. She was named both Big Ten Freshman of the Year and first team all-Big Ten in 2003. May was also a three-time NFCA all-Mideast Region pick and was a two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America District 7 selection.

May was drafted by the Chicago Bandits of the National Professional Fastpitch League as the fourth pick in the second round in the 2006 draft. She earned the 2006 Nokona Rookie of the Year award and was also named to the all-NPF team.

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