March 29, 2009
IOWA CITY, IA – The University of Iowa baseball team dropped the series finale against Michigan Sunday afternoon, 7-5, at soggy Duane Banks Field. The game was delayed three hours after the Iowa grounds-crew needed the extra time to remove last night’s snow fall.
Three costly Hawkeye errors in the top of the eighth inning proved to be the difference in today’s rubber match. In total, the Hawkeyes were charged with a season-high five errors.
T.J. Cataldo paced the Hawkeye offense going 2-for-4 with two RBI. Justin Toole went 1-for-4, extending his hitting streak to 10 games, and also scored one run. Andrew Ewing went 1-for-3 with an RBI double. Wes Freie went 2-for-4 with a double, an RBI and two runs scored.
Michigan (16-7, 2-1) got on the board first with two runs on four hits and a Hawkeye error in the top of the third.
The Hawkeyes grabbed their only lead of the contest in the bottom of the third with three runs. Toole led off the frame with a single to left field. One out later, Kristi Muller walked. Freie plated Iowa’s first run on a hit-and-run, scoring Toole. Freie later advanced to second on a wild pitch. Cataldo then hit a shot to right field to plate his 23rd and 24th RBIs of the season.
The visitors regained the momentum in the top of the fourth with three runs on four hits, featuring a Mike Dufek two-RBI single through the left side. Dufek finished the contest with three hits and three RBI.
Iowa (9-12, 1-2) scored one in the fourth to make the score, 5-4. Ryan Durant reached on a fielding error by Michigan’s shortstop to lead off the inning. He then moved to second on a Zach McCool sac bunt. Two batters later Durant scored on a Ewing RBI double down the right field line.
After three scoreless innings, Michigan furthered its lead to 7-4, capitalizing on three Hawkeye errors in the eighth inning. Hawkeye second baseman Mike McQuillan was charged with two miscues in the frame.
Iowa scored its final run in the bottom of the eighth. Freie led off with a ground-rule double and later scored on a Tyson Blaser RBI groundout to the second baseman.
Michigan reliever Travis Smith pitcher four and two-thirds, allowing only one unearned run to earn his fourth victory of the season. Tyler Burgoon pitched the final two innings to get his third save.
Freie got the loss, his second of the year. In total, Iowa pitchers collected 10 strikeouts today and 28 for the three-game series.
The Hawkeyes return to action Tuesday night when Iowa hosts Upper Iowa. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m. at Duane Banks Field.
GAME SUMMARYMichigan 002 300 020 7 12 3Iowa 003 100 010 5 8 5
WP - Smith (4-2)LP - Freie (2-2)SV - Burgoon (3)