May 10, 2008
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA– The Iowa baseball team lost the nightcap against Penn State in the bottom of the seventh at Medlar Field Saturday, 13-9. In the loss, Iowa scattered 11 hits, played errorless defense, stole a season-high eight bases and capitalized on three Nittany Lion errors.
The Hawkeyes lost the game in the bottom of the seventh 13-9, despite having a three run lead. A Corey Wine two-run homer started things off for Penn State, and a Joe Blackburn walk-off grand slam ended it.
Seven Hawkeyes recorded a hit in the game. Kurtis Muller led the Iowa offensive effort, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Muller’s RBI was the his 42nd of the year, which is only one shy of John Knapp’s single-season Iowa true freshman record of 43 established in 1986. Zach McCool went 2-for-3 with an RBI, run scored, walk and two stolen bases. Kyle Riffel also went 2-for-3 with one run scored, a double, walk and two stolen bases. Justin Toole recorded his 24th consecutive game with a hit. Caleb Curry swiped three bases today to tie Lance Platz (1979) for second place on Iowa’s single-season stolen base chart with 37.
Iowa got on the board in the top of the second to take a 1-0 lead. Riffel drew a one-out walk, and then stole second. One batter later, McCool singled up the middle to score Riffel.
Penn State struck back in the bottom of the second to take a 2-1 lead. The inning featured a Rick Marlin RBI double.
The Hawkeyes had a two-out rally in the third, scoring three to take a 4-2 lead. Tyson Blaser started it with two-outs with a double to left field. Muller singled up the middle and advanced to second on a fielding error by the center fielder, which allowed Blaser to score. T.J. Cataldo drew a walk to put runners on first and second. Riffel doubled down the left field line to bring in two Iowa runs.
The Nittany Lions tied it up the bottom of the third, manufacturing two runs to make it 4-4.
Iowa plated one in the top of the fifth, to take a 5-4 advantage. Blaser led things off with a walk, followed by a Muller single. Blaser scored despite Curry hitting into a double play. Penn State tied it up the bottom of the inning to make it 5-5.
The Black and Gold scored three in the bottom of the sixth to take an 8-5 lead. With one out, McCool drew a walk and stole second. Hoef singled to center, and later stole second. Toole came up big with an infield single, to score McCool. Curry reached on a fielding error by the shortstop, Hoef scored. Blaser hit a deep sacrifice fly to center to score Toole.
Penn State chipped away at the Iowa lead, scoring one in the bottom of the sixth to make it 8-6.
The Hawkeyes added an another run in the seventh, to make the score 9-6. Muller led Iowa off with an infield single and was moved to second by a Cataldo sac bunt. Riffel came up big with an RBI single up the middle.
“I think we’ve lost a game in every way you possibly can,” Head coach Jack Dahm said. “We played a pretty good ballgame. But every inning we scored they scored and we could never take total control. You would think three runs in the bottom of the seventh would be enough, but it wasn’t. We just couldn’t get it done.”
As a team, Iowa has stolen 125 bases this season, which is only two from equaling the school record of 127 set by the 1981 Hawkeye team.
Iowa will take on Penn State at Medlar Field tomorrow in the final game of the four-game series. First pitch is set for 11:05 a.m. (CDT).
Iowa 013 013 1 - 9 11 0
Penn State 022 011 7 - 13 12 3
WP - Hawkins (3-3)
LP - Kenyon (1-2)