Hawkeyes and Nittany Lions Set for Weekend Series

May 5, 2011

Iowa (16-26, 5-10) vs. Penn State (25-16, 7-8)
Dates Friday, May 6 – Sunday, May 8
Location Iowa City, Iowa | Duane Banks Field
Statistics Penn State | Iowa
Media Coverage
Television Saturday’s game will be televised live on Big Ten Network (HD)
Video Video of Friday and Sunday’s games available for purchase at video.bigtenwork.com
Radio Live broadcasts of all three games available for purchase at hawkeyesports.com
Live Stats Gametracker of all three games at hawkeyesports.com
Game 1
Date | Time Friday, May 6 | 6:05 p.m.
Pitching Matchup IOWA: Jr. LHP Jarred Hippen (2-5, 3.39 ERA) vs.
PSU: So. RHP Steven Hill (4-3, 2.76 ERA)
Game 2
Date | Time Saturday, May 7 | 2:05 p.m.
Pitching Matchup IOWA: So. LHP Matt Dermody (4-4, 4.03 ERA) vs.
PSU: So. RHP John Walter (5-3, 2.59 ERA)
Game 3
Date | Time Sunday, May 8 | Noon
Pitching Matchup IOWA: Jr. RHP Patrick Lala (2-4, 3.22 ERA) vs.
PSU: Jr. LHP Mike Franklin (2-1, 5.97 ERA)

Complete Release

Iowa returns to Big Ten action this weekend when it hosts Penn State in its final Big Ten home series of the season. First pitch of game one is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. on Friday. The Hawkeyes and Nittany Lions also play Saturday at 2:05 p.m. and Sunday at noon. Saturday’s game will be televised live on Big Ten Network (HD). Admission is $3 for adults, and free for UI students and youths.

Iowa baseball fans can follow the Hawkeyes with live stats (Gametracker) on hawkeyesports.com. Click on the GT link found on both the front page and the baseball schedule page. Whistlin’ Ray Gilmore is in his 34th season with the Hawkeye baseball program and will be posting the stats.

Saturday’s contest will be televised live on the Big Ten Network (HD). It is Iowa’s third and final scheduled regular-season Big Ten Network telecasts this year. Tom Hart and former Hawkeye Danan Hughes will call the action. Hughes was a two-sport athlete at Iowa, excelling in both baseball and football. He was an all-Big Ten honoree in both, playing outfield and wide receiver. Hughes played in the Milwaukee Brewers organization before beginning a lengthy professional football career with the Kansas City Chiefs. The games Friday and Sunday can be seen on BigTenNetwork.com.

Fans can catch this weekend’s three-game series at Minnesota online at hawkeyesports.com. The radio voice of the Iowa baseball team, Brent Balbinot, will call the action.

Fans of the Hawkeyes can take advantage of a number of promotions during the Michigan State series. Friday is the annual Pink Game and Dollar Hot Dog Night. Fans are encouraged to wear pink to the game to receive the $2 group rate. Pink wrist bands will be given to fans in attendance. Saturday is Junior Hawk Club Day and Iowa Hawkeye headbands will be given to fans. Sunday is Senior Day and the NCJC Clothing Drive. Seven Hawkeye seniors will be honored and fans are encouraged to help support the NCJC by bringing a clothing donation. The baseball trading card strip #8 will also be given out to fans in attendance on Sunday.

The Hawkeyes will honor seven seniors Sunday in the series finale against Penn State. Tyson Blaser (Taylor Ridge, Ill.), Zach Kenyon (Davenport), Kevin Lee (Oak Lawn, Ill.), Kurt Lee (Redding, Calif.), Zach McCool (Manchester), Jeff Pacha (Iowa City) and Trevor Willis (Homer Glen, Ill.) will be honored before the start of Sunday’s game. First pitched is scheduled for noon.

Iowa plays four home games this week. The Hawkeyes lost to Milwaukee Wednesday night (4-3) before hosting Penn State this weekend. This weekend’s series against Penn State marks the final Big Ten home series for Iowa. The Hawkeyes are 5-11 at home. Last season, Iowa went 15-6 at home, including 8-4 in Big Ten contests. The Hawkeyes are 86-84 at home in the Jack Dahm era.

The Hawkeyes are 24-33 all-time against Penn State. The Hawkeye are 13-13 against the Nittany Lions under head coach Jack Dahm.

Penn State is coached by Robbie Wine. Wine is in his seventh year at the helm of the program. The Nittany Lions are 25-16 overall and 7-8 in Big Ten play. Penn State is 12-9 at road sites this season. The Nittany Lions were swept at Michigan State last weekend.

Iowa won two-of-three from Penn State a year ago in the regular season series. The Black and Gold fell in game one at Penn State, 6-2. The Hawkeyes claimed game two, 9-3, stopping the Nittany Lions’ six-game conference winning streak. Iowa’s one-five hitters accounted for 12 of its 15 hits en route to victory. Kurtis Muller, Mike McQuillan, Ryan Durant, Phil Keppler and Kurt Lee led the Hawkeyes offensively, collecting three hits, two RBI and scored a run. The junior was only a home run shy of a cycle, hitting a single, double and a triple. McQuillan had multiple hits for the second straight game, hitting three singles and also scored a run. Durant went 3-for-4, with two doubles, a run scored and a stolen base. Keppler went 2-for-3, with a sacrifice fly and a game-high three RBI, while Lee collected two hits, including a triple and an RBI. Starter Nick Brown earned the win for Iowa, throwing seven strong innings. Iowa tallied 18 hits en route to a 13-9 win over Penn State in the rubber match. The Hawkeyes plated runs in six innings and six players registered multiple hit games: Muller, Andrew Host, Chett Zeise, Ryan Durant, Tyson Blaser and McQuillan.

The Hawkeyes lost to Milwaukee Wednesday night at Duane Banks Field, 4-3. Tyson Blaser led the Iowa offense, going 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. He also stole two bases. Ricky Sandquist started and took the loss, going four and a third, allowing three runs on six hits. He struck out one. The game can be seen as a tape delay Friday at 1 p.m. on Big Ten Network (HD).

Junior Jarred Hippen was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week May 2. The weekly honor is the first of Hippen’s career. The Rock Falls, Ill., native earned the weekly honor after falling one batter shy of a perfect game on Friday against Minnesota at Target Field in Minneapolis. The junior needed just 72 pitches, 76 percent of which were strikes, to get through eight innings, surrendering one hit in the 1-0 loss to the Gophers. The left hander struck out two in the process, recording Iowa’s first one-hitter since Troy Wulf accomplished the feat in a 3-0 win over Southwest Missouri State in 1998. Hippen is the third Hawkeye to garner weekly honors this season and the second pitcher. Centerfielder Trevor Willis was named Big Ten Player of the Week March 7 and starting pitcher Nick Brown was selected as Big Ten Pitcher of the Week March 21.

Last weekend, the Hawkeyes traveled to Minneapolis for a three-game set at Minnesota. Iowa dropped two-of-three to the Golden Gophers at Target Field, the home of the Minnesota Twins. The Hawkeyes lost the series opener Friday evening, 1-0, despite Hawkeye starter Jarred Hippen throwing a one-hit gem. It marked the first one-hitter thrown by a Hawkeye since Troy Wulf one-hit Southwest Missouri State in a 3-0 victory on March 14, 1998. Hippen took the hard-luck loss, despite allowing only one Minnesota base runner. The junior, who was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week May 2, allowed one run on one hit while striking out two Gophers.

Iowa dropped a heart-breaker to Minnesota Saturday, falling in extras, 5-4. Starter Matt Dermody got a no-decision, allowing three runs (one earned), while scattering seven hits and striking out five in five and two thirds. The visitors claimed the series finale Sunday, 7-1, behind stellar pitching and offensive performances. Iowa’s offense recorded 12 hits against the conference rival. The first four Hawkeyes in the lineup each recorded multi-hit games, combining for nine hits. Iowa’s leadoff hitter, Trevor Willis, went 2-for-5. Chett Zeise, batting in the No. 2 spot, went 2-for-5 with two RBI. Mike McQuillan went 3-for-4 with two RBI. The junior leads Iowa with 17 multi-hit games this season, including five three-hit contests. Blaser went 2-for-5 with a home run. In addition, freshman Taylor Zeutenhorst tallied two RBI. Patrick Lala started and recorded the win for the Hawkeyes. The junior pitched five and a third, allowing no runs on two hits. He struck out two. Tim Fangman pitched the final three and two-thirds, earning his third save. He allowed one run on two hits, while striking out three.

Matt Dermody had another solid outing Saturday at Minnesota. The sophomore got a no-decision, allowing three runs (one earned), while scattering seven hits and striking out five in five and two thirds innings. Dermody has not allowed more than two earned runs over his last four starts. The Norwalk, Iowa, native has won four games in 2011 (4-4). As a freshman a year ago, Dermody went 3-2.

Mike McQuillan, known as `Q’ by his teammates and coaches, leads Iowa with a .329 batting average. The junior leads the Hawkeyes with 17 multiple hit games, including 12 two-hit outings and five three-hit games. The Evergreen Park, Ill., native is tied with Trevor Willis in multiple RBI games with seven.

Freshman Taylor Zeutenhorst collected four hits and five RBI last weekend at Minnesota. Zeutenhorst went 2-for-2 with three RBI in Saturday’s 12-inning loss to the Golden Gophers. The rookie delivered two clutch RBI singles, both with two outs. The first was a pinch-hit two-RBI single to pull Iowa within one of the Big Ten rival (3-2), while the other gave the Hawkeyes a brief 4-3 advantage in the top of the 10th. He added a two-RBI single in Sunday’s 7-1 win over the Gophers.

Starters Jarred Hippen and Matt Dermody have been providing the Iowa pitching staff with long, quality outings of late. The duo each threw complete games in Iowa’s series with Indiana (April 16-17). In the doubleheader against Michigan on April 23, Hippen pitched six and two thirds in his outing and Dermody threw eight and two thirds. Last weekend at Minnesota, Hippen tossed a complete game one-hitter Friday and Dermody pitched five and two thirds Saturday. With fellow starter Nick Brown out indefinitely due to injury, this has been crucial for the Hawkeye pitching staff.

Tyson Blaser went 2-for-3 with a double against Milwaukee Wednesday night. The catcher leads all Hawkeyes with 14 doubles this season. The total ranks fourth in the Big Ten.

Iowa out-hit Minnesota Sunday, 12-4, in its 7-1 victory. The Hawkeyes have enjoyed success this season when notching more hits than their opponents. The Black and Gold are 11-4 when out-hitting their opponents.

The Hawkeyes have enjoyed late-inning success this season. Iowa owns a 14-2 record when leading after six innings.

Iowa has enjoyed success this season when getting on the board early. The Hawkeyes are 7-4 when scoring in the first inning and are 14-9 when scoring first.

Trevor Willis has tallied seven triples in 2011, exceeding his total of four from a year ago. The senior had recorded eight total entering this year. The seven triples this season lead the Big Ten and rank fifth nationally.

Tyson Blaser is enjoying success behind the dish in 2011. The senior has thrown out 18 base runners. He gunned down 13 all of last year. Sophomore Keith Brand has thrown out six.

Iowa has laid down 65 sacrifice bunts this season; the third most nationally and the most in the Big Ten. Zach McCool ranks first in the conference and 13th nationally with 13 sacrifices.

Keith Brand did not see action in 2010. In 2011, the redshirt freshman is batting (.286). The walk-on has 12 RBIs. Brand has recorded four multi-hit games and five multiple RBI games.

Iowa has been patient at the plate in 2011. The Hawkeyes have walked 177 times, the second most in the Big Ten. Purdue leads the league with 185.

Mike McQuillan and Tyson Blaser have enjoyed 10-game hitting streaks this year. McQuillan’s streak ended March 18 against Gonzaga. Blaser’s streak ended April 12 against Kansas. Trevor Willis has tallied an eight-game streak and Kurt Lee has recorded a seven-game streak. Tyson Blaser is currently enjoying a seven-game streak.

Twelve Hawkeyes, Mike McQuillan (17), Trevor Willis (13), Tyson Blaser (12), Chett Zeise (10), Kurt Lee (nine), Zach McCool (seven), Bryan Niedbalski (seven), Andrew Ewing (six), Keith Brand (four), Phil Keppler (three), Kasey Carling (three) and Taylor Zeutenhorst (two) have recorded multiple multi-hit games this year. Nine have notched at least one game where they recorded three or more hits. Willis and Blaser have reached the four hit mark, with Willis accomplishing the feat twice.

Iowa tallied 19 runs April 3 in its win over Michigan State (19-7). The Hawkeyes recorded season highs in runs and hits (17). Iowa tallied 10 runs in the seventh inning, earning its first conference win of the year. The Hawkeyes’ previous high in runs this season was 11 and in hits was 16. The 19 runs mark the most the Hawkeyes have scored since defeating Illinois State in last year’s season opener, 19-11. It also marks the most runs Iowa has scored against a conference opponent since defeating Wisconsin in 1989, 22-3. The last time the Hawkeyes scored 10 or more runs in an inning was 1997. Iowa tallied 11 runs in the second inning of an 18-0 win over Truman State.

The Hawkeyes scored 33 runs and pounded out 32 hits in their back-to-back wins over Michigan State (April 3) and Coe College (April 6). The 33 runs mark the most Iowa has scored over two games since the 2009 season when it tallied 35 runs in back-to-back wins over Tennessee-Martin (25-6) and Austin Peay (10-3).

Hawkeye catcher Tyson Blaser recorded his first career home run last season in the regular-season finale against Purdue on May 22. In Iowa’s 19-7 win over Michigan State April 3, the fifth-year senior tallied his first career triple, giving him a cycle for his career. The Taylor Ridge, Ill., native has 34 career doubles to go along with his home run and triple. Blaser leads Iowa with 14 doubles this season. The 14 doubles are the fourth most in the Big Ten.

Four Hawkeye freshmen, Bryan Niedbalski, Taylor Zeutenhorst, Keith Brand and Kyle Haen, started in the 14-8 win over Western Illinois on April 20. Niedbalski went 2-for-4 with an RBI, Zeutenhorst went 1-for-4 with an RBI, Brand finished 2-for-3 with two RBI and Haen went 1-for-2 with two RBI.

Iowa was shorthanded in relief March 29 when its game against South Dakota State went 14 innings. Senior Jeff Pacha and junior Phil Keppler stepped up and gave career best performances on the hill. Pacha threw a career-high four innings in the 14 inning contest, striking out four Jackrabbits. Keppler pitched a career-high three and two-thirds the following day, while striking out four.

Senior Tyson Blaser has been named to the 2011 Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award Watch List. The annual award is to honor those athletes that serve as a team’s starting catcher in at least 75% of the games. The watch list will be narrowed down to 10 semifinalists May 19. The finalists will be announced June 6. A final vote among the national committee will occur during the College World Series. The winner will be announced at the 14th Annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet on June 30, 2011, in Wichita, Kan.

Redshirt senior Tyson Blaser, senior Zach McCool, junior Andrew Ewing, and sophomores Patrick Brennan, Patrick Harshman and Ricky Sandquist comprise Iowa’s 2011 Unity Council.

Hawkeye pitcher Nick Brown was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week March 21. The junior earned Pitcher of the Week accolades for the first time in his career after leading Iowa to an 11-2 win over Notre Dame last March 18. The starter tossed seven scoreless innings, allowing just four hits without issuing a walk. The right-hander also struck out three en route to his second win of the season. Brown is Iowa’s first pitcher to earn the conference weekly honor since Brock Alberts on March 3, 2008.

The Hawkeyes beat Notre Dame March 17, 4-3, in ten innings in the first game of the Irish Classic. The win marked the first time a team defeated Notre Dame on St. Patrick’s Day in five years. The last team to top the Irish on St. Patrick’s Day was the Hawkeyes in 2006, also in San Antonio.

Iowa won at Mississippi State March 4 (5-3) and March 5 (7-6). The two victories over Mississippi State marked the first time in the program’s history that the Hawkeyes collected two wins against an SEC opponent in the same year. The Bulldogs are 19-6.

Zach Kenyon notched his first victory of the year in the 5-3 win over Mississippi State March 4. In the bottom of the sixth, Kenyon accomplished a rare feat. The senior righty struck out four batters. The third hitter struck out swinging, but reached on a wild pitch. Kenyon then got the next batter to strike out swinging. He recorded a career-high eight strikeouts in four innings.

The Hawkeyes will appear on the Big Ten Network at least twice during the 2011 regular season. Iowa’s game at Illinois April 9 was televised. In addition, the Hawkeyes game versus Penn State on Saturday will be televised. The Big Ten Network will also televise the Big Ten Tournament.

In the 7-6 victory against Mississippi State March 5, the Hawkeyes added another rare feat. Senior Trevor Willis led off the fourth with a single to center. With two outs and Willis on third base, senior Tyson Blaser drew a walk. The senior duo then executed the perfect double steal, with Willis stealing home. The last time an Iowa player stole home was March 23, 2007. Jason White accomplished the feat in a 6-5 against North Dakota State.

Senior Trevor Willis was named Big Ten Player of the Week March 7 after recording three multi-hit games in four contests with Georgia State and Mississippi State. Willis posted back-to-back four-hit contests against the Bulldogs, leading Iowa to the series sweep. The four hits marked a career high for Willis. He also went 2-for-4 in the weekend finale, a 3-2 walk-off victory against the Panthers. The native of Lockport, Ill., scored six runs in four games, touching home twice in each of Iowa’s last three games, and drove in a run. The center fielder slugged a triple and went 3-for-4 on the base paths, including two steals in Sunday’s game and a swipe of home on Saturday. For the week, Willis batted .647, with a .667 on base percentage, and slugged at a .765 clip for an OPS of 1.432. The weekly honor is the first for Willis.

The Hawkeyes finished the 2010 Big Ten season tied for third with Northwestern (13-11). The third place finish marked the highest for Iowa, since 2005. In 2005, Iowa finished 19-13 in Big Ten play.

Jarred Hippen, who was named to the All-Big Ten Tournament team last year, was named College Baseball Daily’s preseason Big Ten Pitcher of the Year. He was also named to Perfect Game USA’s and Baseball America’s preseason all-conference teams. Hippen, a junior left-hander, started 15 games in 2010 en route to second team All-Big Ten honors.

Junior Kurtis Muller was selected in the Major League baseball 2010 First-Year Player Draft. Muller was chosen by the Cincinnati Reds in the 22nd round (667th pick). Senior Zach Robertson was picked by the Florida Marlins in the 30th round (917th pick), incoming recruit Patrick Lala was selected in the 29th round (891) by the Philadelphia Phillies, senior Patrick Schatz was picked by the Chicago White Sox in the 49th round (1,478th pick) and incoming recruit Taylor Zeutenhorst was selected in the 41st round by the Phillies (1,251st pick). Lala and Zeutenhorst did not sign professional contracts and are on Iowa’s 2011 roster. However, Muller did sign a contract and will forgo his senior year of eligibility. Under Jack Dahm, 22 Hawkeyes have been drafted. Sixteen players have been drafted in the past four years.

Big Ten Network television coverage of 2011 Big Ten baseball and softball begins on Sunday with a doubleheader of action and the premiere of Big Ten Diamond Report, the network’s new weekly studio show. Big Ten Diamond Report will review the sports’ top headlines, preview upcoming matchups and look at national storylines affecting the Big Ten. Mike Hall and Rick Pizzo host the show along with former Hawkeye pitcher and major leaguer Cal Eldred and Tammy Williams. The show will air each Sunday during the spring through the end of the Big Ten baseball and softball seasons with expert analysis, player and coach interviews, features and exclusive access inside the diamond.

Every year the UI Athletics Department continues to upgrade Duane Banks Field. In 2010, the Hawkeyes added 500 chair back seats behind home plate. The chair backs allow Hawkeye fans to purchase season tickets. This past fall, Duane Banks Field underwent a facelift, with a complete resurfacing of the field. New sod, dirt and drainage system were installed. Additionally, new batting cages were put in place down the right field line. In 2009, the UI Recreation Building underwent a complete makeover. Improvements included: a new locker room, lounge, training room and weight room for the baseball program. Iowa boasted a 15-6 home record at Duane Banks Field in 2010.

Head Coach Jack Dahm is assisted by coach Ryan Brownlee and coach Chris Maliszewski, along with volunteer coach Zach Dillon. Over the past 10 seasons, 25 players coached or recruited by Brownlee have been drafted; two more signed free agent contracts. In the past two years, Kurtis Muller, Patrick Schatz, Steve Turnbull, Kyle Heim, Mike Schurz and recruits Matt Dermody, Dan Sheppard, Patrick Lala and Taylor Zeutenhorst were drafted by major league teams. In six years of coaching summer collegiate leagues, he has seen 33 of his players sign pro contracts, including Khalil Green and Joe Thatcher of the Padres, Kevin Cash of the Yankees, Dan Meyer of the Marlins and Luke Scott of the Astros. Last season, the hitting coach preached a `pitch-by-pitch’ approach at the plate that helped propel the Hawkeyes to 11 wins in their final 14 contests; the team eventually finished 30-28. Iowa finished third in the conference and ultimately placed second at the Big Ten Tournament. The tournament berth was the eighth in school history. The Hawkeyes won three games at the tournament, which was the first time an Iowa team had won any game since 1990. The runner up finish in the conference tournament tied the school’s highest finish, which was accomplished once before (1983).

Maliszewski is in his third season as the Hawkeye pitching coach. In addition to his role as pitching coach, Maliszewski is also responsible for the team’s travel arrangements and assists with the youth summer camps. In 2010, Maliszewski and his pitching staff helped propel Iowa to a third place finish in the conference, as well as earning the school’s eighth Big Ten Tournament appearance. The Hawkeyes finished as the runner-up in the tournament after winning three games — the first tournament wins for Iowa since 1990. Maliszewski mentored his young pitching staff to improved numbers in his second campaign. Under his tutelage, the Hawkeyes posted improved numbers in wins, ERA, saves, walks, wild pitches and opposing batting average. Iowa’s talented arms helped the Hawkeyes to a late surge, winning 11 of their last 14 games. Individually, pitcher Jarred Hippen was named to the all-tournament team, as well as garnering second team all-league accolades. In addition to Hippen’s accomplishments, closer Kevin Lee broke the school single-season record with 13 saves – nearly double the saves Iowa had as a team in 2009.

All-Tournament passes and group tickets to the 2011 Big Ten Baseball Tournament to be held May 25-28 at Huntington Park, home of the Triple-A Columbus Clippers, are on sale. All-Tournament passes are available for $100 each. Group tickets (minimum 20) are available for $7 per ticket. All tickets are available at www.ColumbusSports.org, www.bigten.org and www.ticketmaster.com. Last year at the Big Ten Tournament, the Hawkeyes bounced Purdue from the six-team tournament with two victories over the Boilermakers and rallied from a seven-run deficit to stun second-seeded Michigan in the semifinals. Iowa reached the championship game for the first time since 1983. Iowa ultimately fell to the well-rested and top-seeded Minnesota team in the title game.

Up-to-date head shots of all Iowa players and coaches are available on the internet at pics.hawkeyebaseball.com. Contact the Iowa Sports Information office if you are in need of additional photos.

Iowa continues Big Ten action next week when it travels to Ohio State. The Buckeyes and Hawkeyes will play a three-game set beginning Friday in Columbus, Ohio.