March 29, 2014
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By JAMES ALLAN
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Michigan scored three times in the bottom of the eighth inning to rally from a one-run deficit to down the University of Iowa baseball team, 4-2, on Saturday afternoon at the Wilpon Complex. The win evens the series at one heading into Sunday’s finale.
“It was a disappointing loss on a day that we wasted a tremendous pitching performance from Sasha Kuebel,” said UI head coach Rick Heller. “He had eight strikeouts and one walk and got us into the eighth inning, but we fell apart with a 2-1 lead.
“It was a day where we wasted opportunities and didn’t execute well offensively. They gave us some opportunities, walking guys, and when an opponent does that you have to take advantage and put runs on the board.”
Trailing 1-0 heading into the top of the eighth, the Hawkeyes used a two-run rally to take their first lead of the contest. Junior Nick Day drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second on a wild pitch and third on a sacrifice bunt off the bat of junior Eric Toole.
Junior Jake Mangler tied the game at one with an RBI single to centerfield before sophomore Tyler Peyton roped a two-out double to right centerfield to make the score 2-1.
After tallying five hits over the first seven innings against Iowa starter Sasha Kuebel, the Wolverines broke through against the southpaw in the bottom half of the eighth. Eric Jacobson led off the frame with a double to left center before scoring on Jacob Cronenworth’s RBI single to tie the game at two. Jackson Glines followed with a walk to load the bases and chase Kuebel from the contest.
Sophomore reliever Tyler Radtke entered and nearly got out of the jam without any further damage, as Iowa got the first out at the plate on a fielder’s choice before Radtke struck out Jackson Lamb looking for the second out. Michigan freshman Trey Miller tallied the game-winning hit, lacing a 1-1 pitch through the right side for a two-run single to give the Wolverines a 4-2 advantage.
The Hawkeyes brought the game-tying run to the plate in the top of the ninth inning after Trevor Kenyon drew a two-out walk, but Michigan reliever Jacob Cronenworth got Day to fly out to right center field to end the game.
Kuebel (2-2) suffered the loss after allowing four runs (one earned) on seven hits over seven innings. The St. Louis native had eight strikeouts to one walk in the game.
Cronenworth (2-0) picked up the victory despite allowing two runs on a pair of hits in two innings. Four Michigan pitchers limited the Hawkeyes to two hits over the first seven innings, including a 5 2/3 innings outing by starter Evan Hill before leaving in the sixth after being hit by a line drive.
Iowa finished with just four hits in the contest, each by a different player. Mangler finished 1-for-4 with a run and RBI, while Peyton was 1-for-3 with an RBI.
Michigan jumped out to an early 1-0 lead, using a pair of hits in the bottom of the third inning. Cronenworth had a two-out RBI single in the frame, scoring Cole Martin, who led off the inning with a single to left centerfield.
After tallying a pair of hits against Hill over the first five innings, the Hawkeyes missed a golden opportunity in the sixth. Toole started the inning with a single with one out before Mangler laced a line drive off Hill’s left knee, but was thrown out via a 1-5-3 putout on the play.
Hill stayed in the game and walked junior Jake Yacinich before being replaced by Mac Lozer. The right-hander walked Peyton to load the bases, but got out of the jam, getting a first-pitch groundout by Dan Potempa to leave all three runners stranded. Iowa stranded a total of seven base runners in the game.
The rubber game of the three-game series will begin at 12 p.m. (CT) Sunday at Ray Fisher Stadium.
|Michigan 4, Iowa 2||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Iowa (15-8, 3-2)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||0||2||4||1|
|Michigan (11-15-1, 2-3)||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||3||X||4||8||0|
|W: Cronenworth (MICH) 2-0|
|L: Kuebel (IOWA) 2-2|