March 16, 2008
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DeLand, FL – The University of Iowa softball team claimed the 2008 Stetson Spring Classic championship with a 2-1 win over host-school Stetson Sunday night. Iowa finished the tournament with a 4-1 record and is now 18-6 overall.
Iowa took the lead in the bottom of the fifth on a strange turn of events. Sophomore Taylor Leichsenring singled and moved to second on a Stetson error off the bat of freshman Chelsey Carmody. Junior Colleen McGlaughlin drew a walk to load the bases and a wild pitch to senior Emily Nichols rolled to the backstop. Leichsenring sprinted home to tie the game, but the throw from the Stetson catcher back to the plate struck Leichsenring in the helmet and bounced to the pitcher’s circle. Carmody, who was rounding third, hustled home and slid in safely for the go-ahead run.
Stetson scored first in the second inning with an RBI double by Rachel Lowe and looked to add more runs in the fifth, but timely pitching and defense got Iowa out of a jam. Stetson started the fifth with single, followed by a Hawkeye error and a wild pitch to put runners on second and third with no outs. Sophomore Amanda Zust was then able to record a strikeout and two ground balls to get out of the inning.
Zust threw a complete game and allowed one run on one hit while striking out four with no walks.
“I thought our base running and defense were both really sharp,” Head Coach Gayle Blevins said. “Smart base running got us the win today and our defense made great plays behind Amanda (Zust). Those things can make a big difference and that was the case tonight.”
Iowa returns to action in DeLand Tuesday when they face Tulsa at 2 p.m. (CDT) and Stetson at 4 p.m. (CDT).