April 26, 2014
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By JAMES ALLAN
IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa baseball team closed out a three-game sweep of South Dakota State with a pair of victories Saturday at Duane Banks Field. The Hawkeyes scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth to win the opener, 4-3, before downing the Jackrabbits, 12-3, in the night cap.
“You’ll take a sweep anytime, especially on the doubleheader day” said UI head coach Rick Heller. “That’s not easy to do, especially after a night game. I’m proud of our guys and the effort they gave.”
After posting a 2-1 walk-off win in 11 innings Friday night, the Hawkeyes tallied their second-straight walk-off victory in the opening game en route to a 4-3 victory. Junior Nick Day led off the ninth inning with a hit by pitch before Eric Toole reached on a sacrifice bunt when South Dakota State tried for a force out at second base.
Following a walk to Jake Manger to load the bases, sophomore Tyler Peyton roped an RBI single over the head of Zach Coppola in centerfield to send the Hawkeyes to their fourth walk-off victory of the season. The hit was Peyton’s fourth of the game, a career-high.
“Tyler had a big day (in the doubleheader) with six hits and had the big RBI that won it in the bottom of the ninth,” said Heller. “It was a nice win, two walk-offs in a row, and we carried that over into game two.”
UI starter Sasha Kuebel was sharp early, retiring 10-straight after giving up a first-inning single, but it was the Jackrabbits who struck first, plating a pair of runs in the top of the fifth. Following a leadoff single by Paul Jacobson, SDSU’s Sam Pack and Zach Holt had consecutive one-out RBI singles to give the Jackrabbits a 2-0 advantage.
The Hawkeyes fought back to tie the game in the bottom of the sixth before taking a 3-2 lead with one run in the seventh. Peyton led off the sixth with an infield single, stole second and advanced to third on an infield single by Yacinich.
After Yacinich swiped second to put runners on second and third, Potempa laced a two-run single through the left side to even the game at two. The Hawkeyes then took the lead an inning later courtesy of an RBI single by Peyton, plating junior Nick Day, who opened the inning with a leadoff single.
South Dakota State tied the game in the top of the eighth. Following a single, hit by pitch and walk to start the inning, Iowa went to sophomore reliever Tyler Radtke out of the bullpen. Iowa traded a run for a double play groundout before Radtke struck out Jacobson looking to end the inning.
Radtke (2-2) pitched two innings of hitless relief for his second win in as many days. The sophomore struck out two against one walk. Kuebel scattered four hits and allowed three runs (two earned) over seven innings. He had six strikeouts while issuing two walks.
“Today was a day where we were short-handed on the mound, and we needed some things to go right, and one of them was Sasha’s start, and he did a great job,” said Heller. “Radtke was great in the back end of the ball game, especially after having to use him last night. We are proud of Tyler for gutting it out.”
Andrew Clemen (0-2) suffered the loss, allowing one run after not recording an out in the ninth. SDSU starter Chris Anderson allowed three runs on 10 hits over 6 2/3 innings, finishing with 10 strikeouts against one walk.
The Hawkeyes didn’t need a walk-off in game two, as Iowa roped 13 hits en route to a 12-3 victory. It was the 11th time in Iowa’s last 12 games the Hawkeyes have finished with 10 or more hits.
“We tried to put some runs up there early and keep attacking with our offense,” said Heller. “Once we started rolling with quality at-bats up and down the lineup, we kept coming. We did a nice job all day long and guys kept attacking, and that’s what we wanted to do.”
Iowa used the long ball to take a 1-0 lead in the second inning when senior Taylor Zeutenhorst hit an opposite field solo home run to left field off SDSU starter Chad Hodges. The Jackrabbits briefly went ahead 2-1 in the top of the third courtesy of RBI singles from Matt Johnson and Jordan Varga against Iowa starter Nick Hibbing.
The Hawkeyes regained the lead in the bottom half of the third, scoring three runs on three hits to take a 4-2 advantage. Day and Toole opened the frame with consecutive singles before Mangler walked to load the bases. Peyton then drew a bases loaded walk to plate the first run, Yacinich followed with an infield RBI single before Mangler scored the third run on a double-play groundout.
Iowa added a single run in the fourth on a Toole sacrifice fly and two runs in the fifth courtesy of a pair of RBI singles from sophomore Jimmy Frankos and junior Kris Goodman. The Hawkeyes then broke the game open, plating four runs in the seventh and one in the eighth to open a double-digit advantage.
Toole plated the Hawkeyes’ eighth run with an RBI single in the seventh before Mangler doubled home the ninth run, lacing an RBI double down the left field line. Toole scored Iowa’s 10th run on a wild pitch before Peyton stretched the advantage to 11-2 with a sacrifice fly to right field.
Zeutenhorst accounted for Iowa’s final run, connecting on his second home run of the game — his second-straight opposite field shot down the left field line — making the score 12-2. Zeutenhorst is the first Hawkeye since Sean Flanagan in 2012 to hit two home runs in a single game.
The Jackrabbits plated one run in their final at-bat against freshman Jake Reinhardt before the right-hander induced a game-ending 5-4-3 double play to close out the victory.
Five Hawkeyes — Toole (2-for-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs), Mangler (2-for-4, 2 run, 1 RBI), Peyton (2-for-2, 1 run, 2 RBIs) Zeutenhorst (2-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBIs) and Frankos (2-for-3, 2 runs, 1 RBI) — had two-hit games. Peyton finished the day 6-for-7 with four RBIs and three runs scored, while Day extended his hitting streak to 10 games.
UI junior Andrew Hedrick (3-2) picked up the victory, throwing 5 1/3 innings of two-hit relief. He had two strikeouts against zero walks in his first outing since April 9. Hibbing made his first start of the season, allowing two runs on six hits over 2 2/3 innings.
“I was pleased with (Hedrick’s) demeanor,” said Heller. “Today was a big step for him, improving and getting where he needs to be. It couldn’t happen at a better time because we need Andrew down the stretch if we don’t have Tyler Peyton or Calvin Mathews for the next week or two. He’s going to have to be one of the guys that steps up.”
Hodges (5-4) suffered the loss, allowing five runs on six hits in three innings of work. The Jackrabbits used five pitchers in the contest.
Iowa (25-15) returns to action Tuesday, hosting Milwaukee at 6 p.m. (CT) at Banks Field.
|Iowa 4, South Dakota State 3||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|South Dakota State (21-20)||0||0||0||0||2||0||0||1||0||3||4||1|
|W: Radtke (IOWA) 2-2|
|L: Clemen (SDSU) 0-2|
|Iowa 12, South Dakota State 3||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|South Dakota State (21-21)||0||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||3||11||1|
|W: Hedrick (IOWA) 3-2|
|L: Hodges (SDSU) 5-4|