March 22, 2013
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa softball team dropped a 4-1 decision to Minnesota on Friday evening in its Big Ten and home opener at Pearl Field. The Golden Gophers used a four-run second inning and a solid outing from starter Sara Moulton to earn the league victory.
“We have to stay the course,” said UI head coach Marla Looper. “We spent the last six weeks prepping for the Big Ten season. We have to take that preparation into our games. We did not do a very good job of being the aggressor today.”
The visitors (18-10, 1-0) scored all four runs in the second inning with two outs. The Gophers used a two-out single to score two and a Hawkeye error to push across two more runs, taking an early 4-0 lead.
Iowa (19-9, 0-1) tallied a run in the fifth, cutting the lead to 4-1. Senior Johnnie Dowling singled to third to open the frame, before advancing to second on a groundout by classmate Bradi Wall. Megan Blank then launched a double off the wall in right to score Dowling. The sophomore leads the Big Ten with 38 RBIs.
Moulton shut down the Hawkeye offense in the final two frames to earn the win. She tossed seven innings, allowing one run on six hits to move to 16-6 on the season.
Kayla Massey took the loss, dropping her first decision in seven outings (9-5). The junior allowed two earned runs on seven hits in seven innings. She struck out seven Gophers.
Dowling and Blank led the Iowa offense, recording multi-hit games. Dowling finished 2-for-4 with a run scored, while Blank went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Massey and Sammi Gyerman also found the hit column.
“We will regroup and get back at it tomorrow,” said Looper.
Iowa and Minnesota will continue action on Saturday, meeting at 2 p.m. at Pearl Field.
|Minnesota 4, Iowa 1||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||R||H||E|
|Minnesota (18-10, 1-0)||0||4||0||0||0||0||0||4||7||0|
|Iowa (19-9, 0-1)||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||1||6||1|
|W: Moulton (MINN) 16-6|
|L: Kayla Massey (IOWA) 9-5|