March 28, 2014
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By JAMES ALLAN
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Sophomore Calvin Mathews’ first career complete game sent the University of Iowa baseball team to a 3-2 series-opening victory at Michigan on Friday afternoon at the Wilpon Complex.
“The story of the day is Calvin,” said UI head coach Rick Heller. “He was in total control all afternoon. He worked out of a couple of jams in the first and third, but after that he settled in and pitched fantastic. It was a tremendous performance, and he stepped up big for us on a Friday night.”
Mathews (3-1) allowed two runs on four hits over the first three innings before surrendering a pair of hits the rest of the way. The right-hander retired the Wolverines in order in five innings, including sitting-down nine-straight batters from the fifth through seventh innings. Mathews allowed two runs on six hits in the game, while tying a career-high with nine strikeouts to zero walks.
After tallying a single hit through the first 10 batters of the game and falling behind 2-0, the Hawkeyes broke through in the top of the fourth inning against Michigan starter Ben Ballantine. Following a pair of walks to leadoff the frame, sophomore Tyler Peyton drove in the first Iowa run on an RBI groundout before senior Taylor Zeutenhorst followed with an RBI single to centerfield to even the contest at two.
The Hawkeyes grabbed the lead in the fifth against Wolverine reliever Logan McAnallen. Junior Eric Toole got the inning started with a one-out single to left field before moving to third base on junior Jake Mangler’s single to right field. With two outs, Peyton gave Iowa the 3-2 lead with an RBI single through the right side.
Iowa’s offense put eight runners on base in the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth innings, but couldn’t deliver the knockout blow. The Hawkeyes even had a run taken off the scoreboard in the eighth.
Senior Trevor Kenyon drew a one-out walk in the eighth and moved to third on a Toole single, bringing Mangler to the plate with two outs. Kenyon scored Iowa’s fourth run on a Mangler infield single to third base on a ball that was ruled a hit, but the run was wiped away after the umpiring crew huddled and decided to overturn the initial ruling.
“The ball was ruled fair by the home plate umpire, we scored a run, and he decided to go out and ask the other umpires if they thought it was fair,” said Heller. “I don’t quite understand it, but it went against us. That’s baseball; we can’t do much about it, I didn’t agree with it, but we survived it.”
The Wolverines put together their only real threat against Mathews in the eighth when Carmen Benedetti singled to start the inning, before pinch runner Zach Zott moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt. Mathews erased the base runner when he picked off Zott with a 1-6-5-4 putout before getting a fly out to end the inning.
Mathews then retired the side in order in the bottom of the ninth to finish off the complete game, needing just 106 pitches.
The Hawkeyes out-hit Michigan, 8-6, with six of the eight hits coming from three players. Toole posted his team-best 11th multi-hit game, finishing 2-for-5 with a run, Zeutenhorst was 2-for-4 with an RBI, and Potempa was 2-for-5. Peyton drove in two of Iowa’s three runs, including the game-winner.
McAnallen (1-3) suffered the loss, allowing one run on four hits in 2 2/3 innings. Ballantine pitched four innings to start the contest, allowing two runs on three hits with five strikeouts.
Michigan jumped out to the early 2-0 lead, plating single runs in the first and third innings. The Wolverines scored the game’s first run on a Kyle Jusick RBI single up the middle in the first. Two innings later, Michigan had back-to-back one-out singles before Travis Maezes scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Jackson Glines.
Iowa (15-7, 3-1) and Michigan will take the field for game two of the series at 1 p.m. (CT) Saturday.
|Iowa 3, Michigan 2||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Iowa (15-7, 3-1)||0||0||0||2||1||0||0||0||0||3||8||0|
|Michigan (10-15-1, 1-3)||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||6||1|
|W: Mathews (IOWA) 3-1|
|L: McAnnallen (MICH) 1-3|