May 7, 2014
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By JAMES ALLAN
IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa baseball team used a pair of three run innings in the sixth and seventh innings to put away Upper Iowa and claim an 8-3 victory Wednesday night at Duane Banks Field. The win improves the Hawkeyes’ record to 27-17.
“I was a little nervous there for a while, but we finally broke through and Dan Potempa had a couple of big hits to drive in a couple of runs,” said UI head coach Rick Heller, who was coaching against his alma mater. “I was happy to get a win, it was a good game. Upper Iowa hit the ball well, and we were able to take advantage of a couple of mistakes they made.”
The Hawkeyes jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first courtesy of a pair of hits and a Peacock error. Junior Jake Mangler started the inning with a one-out single to left field before junior Jake Yacinich delivered a two-out single through the right side to put runners on the corners.
Mangler crossed the plate on an error by Upper Iowa shortstop Mitch Moser when he couldn’t come up with a throw on Yacinich’s stolen base attempt and the ball squirted into center field. The steal was Yacinich’s 23rd this season.
Neither team could muster any more offense until the bottom of the sixth inning when the Hawkeyes broke through against Peacock reliever Martin Valdez. Junior Tyler Peyton led off the frame with a double off the wall in centerfield before Yacinich brought him home with an RBI single to centerfield. The next Iowa batter — junior Dan Potempa — drove the first pitch he saw for a two-run, towering blast over the left field fence, stretching the Hawkeye lead to 4-0.
The Peacocks got on the board in the top of the seventh, cutting the Iowa advantage to 4-2 with a pair of two-out RBI singles. Tyler Adams laced an RBI single up the middle against UI reliever Jared Mandel before pinch-hitter Eric Cottrell plated the second run with an RBI single to left field.
The Hawkeyes broke open a five-run lead with a three-spot in the bottom half of the seventh. Following back-to-back singles by Mangler and Peyton, Yacinich drove in the fifth run with an RBI single up the middle. Potempa followed by lacing a two-run double into the gap in left center to make the score 7-2. They were his third and fourth RBIs of the contest, tying a career-high.
Upper Iowa opened the eighth with back-to-back hits, putting runners on the corners with no outs against Iowa reliever Brandon Shulista. The Hawkeyes then summoned closer Tyler Radtke from the bullpen, where he struck out the first two batters before giving up an RBI single to Luis Ravelo to make the score 7-3. Radtke followed with his third strikeout, leaving a pair of Peacocks on base.
Iowa added its final run in the bottom half of the eighth without a hit. Goodman opened the frame by reaching on an error by Mitch Moser at shortstop before coming around to score on an RBI groundout by junior Eric Toole.
The Hawkeyes finished with 12 hits in the game, 10 coming from the 2-4 spots in the lineup. Yacinich went 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs, extending his hitting streak to 11 games, while Potempa was 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a run scored. Mangler (2-for-5, 2 runs) and Peyton (2-for-4, 2 runs) both had two-hit games.
It was a Johnnie-all-staff night for the Iowa pitching staff. Junior Nick Hibbing (2-3) started and threw three innings, scattering three hits en route to his second victory before giving way to junior Andrew Hedrick, who threw two scoreless innings of two-hit ball.
Freshman Matt Allen allowed a pair of runs on three hits in 1 2/3 innings, Shulista allowed one run on two hits in 1/3 an inning before Radtke got the final six outs, allowing two hits and striking out four.
Iowa closes out its home slate with a three-game series Friday-Sunday against Illinois. Friday’s series opener is slated for a 4 p.m. (CT) start, followed by 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. starts Saturday and Sunday.
|Iowa 8, Upper Iowa 3||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Upper Iowa (11-30)||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||1||0||3||14||4|
|W: Hibbing (IOWA) 2-3|
|L: Barron (UIU) 0-4|