Feb. 13, 2009
- Iowa and the Big Ten Network
- Big Ten Network: Free Hawkeye Video
- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
- Iowa Softball wallpaper
TEMPE, AZ – University of Iowa senior Brittany Weil threw the 10th no-hitter in school history and struck out a career-high 19 batters in a 1-0, eight-inning win over Kent State to wrap up Friday’s action at the Littlewood Classic. Weil, who was just one batter away from a perfect game, turned in the best performance of her career to give Iowa the victory.
Weil becomes the first Hawkeye since 2007 to throw a no-hitter and the first since 2005 to throw at least seven innings of no-hit softball. Stephanie Ackerson tossed a five-inning no-hitter in Iowa’s season opener against Howard Feb. 4, 2007. Lisa Birocci also collected a no-hitter against Georgia Southern March 4, 2005.
The Garden Grove, CA, native took a perfect game into extra innings, but a pitch barely hit a Kent State batter with one out in the top of the eighth. This is the first time Weil has thrown a no-hitter after tossing 11 one-hitters in her career.
Weil did most of the work herself, striking out 19 of the 25 batters she faced. She struck out the side in the first, second, fifth and sixth innings, along with striking out two batters in the third, seventh and eighth frames. Weil sat down one batter in the fourth inning as well. Her previous high was 15 K’s against BYU March 15, 2007. Weil’s 19 strikeouts are the most for an Iowa pitcher since Birocci fanned 17 batters twice during the 2005 season.
“I really don’t care about no-hitters or strikeouts, I’m just glad we got the win,” Weil said. “It’s important for us to come out of this tournament with as many wins as possible. We played a solid game defensively and got the one run we needed for the win.”
Iowa scored go-ahead run in the bottom of the eighth, after the international tiebreaker rule was used, which places the last out of the previous inning on second base. Freshman Liz Watkins was put on second, and senior Rachel West then entered as a pinch-runner. West was sacrificed to third by senior Quinn Morelock, and senior Sam Heinzman drove in the game-winning run with a sacrifice fly to left field.
“Brittany completely controlled the game for us today,” Head Coach Gayle Blevins said. “She held us in there until we could get that run. We are glad to start the weekend with two wins.”
Kent State pitcher Kylie Reynolds kept the Hawkeye offense in check, allowing only two hits while striking out 11. Heinzman along with fellow senior Erin Riemersma collected Iowa’s hits.
Iowa will resume play at the Littlewood Classic Saturday when it faces Illinois State at 2 p.m. (CT).