Feb. 26, 2011
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Fort Myers, Fla. — The University of Iowa softball team ran its winning streak to six games, topping UMBC, 5-1, and Eastern Michigan, 7-0, Saturday morning at the Moe’s Blue and Green Invite. The Hawkeye pitchers dominated the day’s action, allowing a single run in the two games, scattering eight hits with 10 strikeouts.
The Iowa bats started off hot in the opening game, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning. Junior Katie Keim led off the game with a walk before crossing the plate on Liz Watkins’ two-run long ball to center field. It was the catcher’s second home run of the season.
The Retrievers cut the Hawkeye advantage in half in the bottom of the second inning when Katie Ferguson connected on a solo shot to left field. Iowa, however, pulled away by scoring three runs in the fifth inning to take a 5-1 lead.
Senior Chelsey Carmody started things off by reaching on a one-out single to right field, and Jenny Schuelke followed with a walk to put two runners on with one out. After Watkins filed out to right, Nikki Gentile delivered with a two-run double. Senior Stephanie Ochoa followed with a double to left center field to plate Gentile, making the score 5-1.
That’s all Lyon needed in the circle, as the sophomore allowed one hit over the final three frames en route to picking up her second victory of the season. Lyon scattered five hits in the complete game win, striking out four UMBC batters, while surrendering a single walk.
“Chelsea did a great job, only walking one and having a good number of strikeouts,” said UI head coach Marla Looper. “She gave up a home run early, but then faced that kid and shut her down later in the game. It was a combination of defense, offense and good base running.”
Watkins led the Hawkeyes with a pair of hits — both extra base hits — and Carmody extended her hitting streak to 10 games.
Iowa got off to another strong start in the second game, sending nine batters to the plate in the opening inning against Eastern Michigan. Carmody got things rolling for the Hawkeyes by hitting a one-out triple to right centerfield before crossing the plate on Schuelke’s double into the left center gap.
Ochoa drove in Iowa’s second run with an RBI single to left field. After Katie Kroeger reached on an error to load the bases, freshman Michelle Zoeller drew a bases loaded walk to plate the team’s third run of the inning.
The Hawkeyes added one run in the third before scoring three in the fourth to take a 7-0 lead. Schuelke led off the fourth with a double — her second of the game — before crossing the plate on Kroeger’s RBI single down the left field line. Zoeller drove in Iowa’s second run with a single up the middle, and Kroeger crossed the plate when Ashley Akers reached on an error.
Freshman Kayla Massey was dominant in the circle for the Hawkeyes, scattering three hits in the complete game shutout. The California native retired the first 10 batters she faced before Katy Blaharski tallied EMU’s first hit with an infield single in the fourth inning.
The single was the lone hit Massey allowed over the first six innings. The freshman struck out six Eagle batters in seven innings, while surrendering zero walks. The performance was Massey’s fourth complete game and her second shutout on the year.
“Kayla had no walks and when you can get through a game without any walks, it gives you a chance for success,” said Looper. “She only let one ball out of the infield, and they had three hits on the day.”
Iowa finished with 11 hits in the game with four players posting multi-hit games. Carmody (2-4), Schuelke (2-4), Ochoa (2-4) and Kroeger (2-3) all had a pair of hits. Carmody has tallied a hit in every game for the Hawkeyes this season — 11 straight.
Iowa (7-4) closes out play in Fort Myers Sunday morning, playing Southern Illinois at 10:15 a.m. (CT).
|Iowa 5, UMBC 1||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||T||H||E|
|W: Chelsea Lyon (UI) 2-3|
|L: Stephanie Weigman (UMBC) 0-2|
|Iowa 7, Eastern Michigan 0||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||T||H||E|
|Eastern Michigan (1-2)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3||2|
|W: Kayla Massey (UI) 5-1|
|L: Jillian Williamson (EMU) 0-1|