March 26, 2015
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The University of Iowa softball team travels to Ann Arbor, Michigan, to take on the No. 4-ranked Wolverines in a three game series. The Hawkeyes and Wolverines will play a doubleheader Saturday with game one beginning at 1 p.m. (CT), followed by game two. Iowa and Michigan will wrap up the three game series with a 2 p.m. (CT) contest on Sunday. Sunday’s game will be shown live on the Big Ten Network.
Sunday’s game will be shown live on BTN. Lisa Byington (play-by-play) and Jennie Ritter (color) will have the call. Audio will be available for all three games on Hawkeye All-Access online at hawkeyesports.com. Austin Bramley will call the action. Gametracker with also be available. Links can be accessed on the softball schedule page at hawkeyesports.com. To receive more frequent game updates, follow @IowaSoftball on Twitter and “like” our official page on Facebook, facebook.com/iowahawkeyessoftball.
Season tickets are now available for the 2015 Iowa softball regular season. Prices are $20 for reserved season tickets, $15 for general admission (public), and $12 for general admission (faculty). Single game tickets are also available for $5. Youth — ages 18 or younger — can attend Hawkeye softball games for free. To purchase season tickets, visit the UI Athletics Ticket Office inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena, call 1-800-IA-HAWKS, or go to hawkeyesports.com.
TAKING ON THE BEST
Nine of Iowa’s 2015 opponents are ranked in the most recent release of the USA Today/NFCA Division I Top-25 Poll (March 24). They include: Oregon (2), Florida (3), Michigan (4), Oklahoma (6), Louisiana Lafayette (9), Minnesota (12), UCF (18), Missouri (20), and North Dakota State (RV).
BLANK MAKES HISTORY
Senior Megan Blank recorded her 53rd career double against Nebraska on March 25. Blank is now in sole possession of the Iowa Softball career doubles record. The previous record of 52 was set by Kari Knopf in 1997.
Four Hawkeyes are hitting .400+ in conference play. Freshman Angela Schmiederer leads the team hitting .500, while senior Megan Blank (.462), junior Whitney Repole (.444) and redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman (.412) are each hitting in the 400s.
WOOD, SCHMIEDERER GO YARD
Freshmen Allie Wood and Angela Schmiederer each recorded home runs in game two of a doubleheader against the Huskers on March 25. Wood notched the third home run of her career when she sent a three run blast over the center field wall. Two batters later, Schmiederer sent a solo blast — the first home run of her career — to center.
RBIs ON THE RISE
Four Hawkeyes — Whitney Repole (11), Holly Hoffman (9), Alyssa Navarro (9) and Sammi Gyerman (18) — have either met or exceeded their RBI totals from a season ago. The Hawkeyes have plated 115 runs through 34 games this season — just 7 shy of last season’s total (47 games).
? Career runs scored: Tied for 11th all-time (111)
? Career hits: 7th all-time (219)
? Career doubles: School record holder (53)
? Career triples: tied for 10th all-time (10), 1 from tying for 7th (11)
? Career HR: Tied for 6th all-time (22)
? Career RBI: 6th all-time (133)
? Career Average: 2nd all-time (.403), Lea Twigg (1996-97) is the record holder with a .409 batting average
? Doubles in a season: 17 in 2012, tied for 4th all-time; 15 in 2013, tied for 9th all-time
? Triples in a season: 5 in 2012, tied for 8th all-time
? HR in a season: 11 in 2013, 3rd all-time
? RBI in a season: 59 in 2013, 2nd all-time
? Average in a season: .437 in 2013 (record holder)
BLANK IN THE B1G
Megan Blank is currently ranked among the top ten in the conference in four different categories. Blank is tied for second in the Big Ten in doubles (10) and hits (42). Blank also ranks seventh in batting average (.429) and is tied for 10th in total bases (64).
Iowa is tied for first in the Big Ten in fielding double plays. The Hawkeyes have turned 17 double plays on the season. They have recorded two double plays in a game four times: No. 6 Louisiana-Lafayette (Feb. 20), No. 6 Oklahoma (March 15), Tulsa (March 18), and Nebraska (March 25).
The Hawkeyes rank second in the Big Ten in doubles. Iowa has recorded 52 doubles on the season. Senior Megan Blank, the career doubles school record holder, leads the team with 10, while redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman has seven.
WITH RUNNERS ON
Senior Megan Blank is hitting .466 with runners on base and .394 with runners in scoring position. Blank currently leads the team in batting average (.429), hits (42), doubles (10), and RBIs (20).
Iowa is ranked seventh in the Big Ten in hits. Iowa has accumulated 224 hits in 34 contests this season. Senior Megan Blank leads the team with 42 hits, while redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman has 33.
Redshirt sophomore Shayla Starkenburg ranks fifth in the Big Ten in batters struck out (110) and third in batters struck out looking (30). Starkenburg has fanned a career high nine batters twice this season (Florida A&M on March 1; East Carolina on March 14. She recorded her first career no-hitter against Southern Utah on Feb. 7. The Ankeny, Iowa, native has 110 strikeouts in 128.0 innings this season.
Michigan is currently ranked No. 4 in the USA Today/NFCA Division I Top-25 Poll. The Wolverines are 29-4 on the season and 3-0 in Big Ten play. Three of Michigan’s four losses have come ranked opponents (No. 3 Florida-2; No. 14 Arizona). The Wolverines hold a 55-53-1 advantage in the all-time series.
HAWKEYES NOTCH 1ST CONFERENCE WIN
The Hawkeyes recorded their first conference victory on Saturday, March 21. Iowa scored eight runs on 12 hits to notch the 8-4 victory over Maryland. Redshirt sophomore Shayla Starkenburg got the complete-game win in the circle for the Hawkeyes. She allowed three earned runs on five hits. She walked seven and struck out three. Four Hawkeyes recorded multiple hit games in the win, including redshirt junior Holly Hoffman (3-for-4), senior Megan Blank (2-for-2), redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman (2-for-3), and freshman Cheyenne Pratt (2-for-3). Blank, freshman Allie Wood, and Hoffman paced Iowa in run production, driving in two runs apiece.
REPOLE FINDS SUCCESS
Junior Whitney Repole posted a .750 batting average in three games against Maryland on March 20-22. Repole registered three hits in four at bats, including a double and an RBI. The San Antonio, Texas, native has a .264 clip in 53 at bats this season.
Redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman and senior Megan Blank registered back-to-back home runs to help Iowa secure a 7-6 victory over Tulsa on March 18. The feat marked the second time the duo has gone back-to-back this season (Cal State Fullerton, 3/7/15).
Redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman has notched four home runs this season. All four of her home runs have come in pairs. The San Pedro, California, native hit a pair of long balls against Cal State Fullerton on March 7 before recording two bombs versus Tulsa on March 13.
CAREER GAME FOR GYERMAN
Redshirt sophomore Sammi Gyerman registered the third and fourth home runs of her career against Tulsa on March 18. The San Pedro, California, native sent a solo bomb to left field in the top of the third before putting a three-run shot over the fence in left center in the top of the fifth. Gyerman tied career highs in RBIs (4), hits (3) and home runs (2).
HOFFMAN GOES YARD
Redshirt junior Holly Hoffman sent a solo home run to left center against Oklahoma on March 15. The bomb was the fourth of her career and first of the season. Hoffman went 2-for-3 in the game with a single and a home run.
BLANK SHINES IN HOME STATE
Senior Megan Blank led the Hawkeyes in batting average (.533), slugging percentage (.867), and on-base percentage (.563) in five games at the Judi Garman Classic on March 5-8. The Culver City, California, native registered eight hits in 15 at bats with five singles, two doubles and a solo home run. Blank recorded multiple hits in three of the five games, including a 3-for-3 effort against San Jose State on March 6.
DOWN GOES NO. 17
The Hawkeyes defeated No. 17 UCF on Feb. 27 to notch their first win over a ranked opponent this season. Junior Erin Erickson used a squeeze bunt to score the eventual game-winning run in the fifth to guide the Hawkeyes to a 3-2 victory. Redshirt sophomore Shayla Starkenburg was credited with the complete game win. She allowed one earned run on six hits and struck out three.
ERICKSON NAMED TO ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Junior Erin Erickson was named to the Ragin’ Cajun Invitational All-Tournament team following the five-game invitational Feb. 20-22. Erickson posted a .308 batting average and a .615 slugging percentage on the weekend with a double, home run, and two RBIs.
STARKENBURG SILENCES THUNDERBIRDS
Redshirt sophomore Shayla Starkenburg registered her first career no-hitter against Southern Utah on Feb. 7. Starkenburg fanned a career-high eight batters and only walked three in seven innings of work. She became just the seventh pitcher in Iowa history to toss a no-hitter, and the first pitcher to do so since Amanda Zust on March 21, 2010. Starkenburg’s no-hitter is the 17th in Iowa softball history.
PRATT SHINES IN DEBUT
Cheyenne Pratt started all five games in left field at the UNI Dome Tournament on Feb. 6-8. The freshman recorded a .462 clip, collecting six hits in 13 at bats. Three of her six hits were for extra bases.
BLANK NAMED PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN
Senior shortstop Megan Blank was named a Preseason First Team All-Big Ten infielder by College Sports Madness on Feb. 4. Blank, a three-time regular season First Team All-Big Ten honoree, led the Hawkeyes in batting average (.361), slugging percentage (.602), on-base percentage (.452), hits (48), doubles (11), triples (3) and RBIs (25) in 2014.
NFCA HONORS BLANK FOR 3RD-STRAIGHT YEAR
Shortstop Megan Blank collected her third-straight NFCA honor as she was a second team All-Midwest Region pick in 2014. The senior was named to the NFCA All-Midwest Region second team as a freshman and first team as a sophomore. She is the 16th player in Iowa history to earn three regional awards in her career.
3 IN A ROW
Senior Megan Blank received her third-straight First Team All-Big Ten accolade and was also named to the conference’s All-Defensive Team, following the 2014 season. The shortstop is the eighth Iowa player to earn first team distinction three times. Blank led the Hawkeyes in batting average (.361), slugging percentage (.602), on-base percentage (.452), hits (48), doubles (11), triples (3) and RBIs (25) last season. In Big Ten action, Blank hit at a .415 clip, slugged .677 and compiled an on-base percentage of .506. Seven of her 11 doubles, two of her three triples, two of her five home runs and 15 of her 25 RBIs came against conference foes. Heading into her senior season, Blank ranks in several career categories at Iowa. She is second with a .398 batting average, sixth with 43 doubles, eighth with 18 home runs, ninth with 113 RBIs and 10th with 10 triples with one season remaining with the Hawkeyes. Blank led the team with 13 multiple-hit games and six multiple-RBI games, had the longest reached base streak (14) and owned the longest hitting streak (9). She ended the season with a seven-game reached base streak.
The Hawkeyes have benefited from two new facilities in 2015 — the indoor Iowa Turf Facility, located at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex, and the Jacobson Hitting Facility, located in football’s former weight room. The HTRC Iowa Turf Facility has enabled the program to have consistency in team practices, while the Jacobson hitting cages have allowed student-athletes to take extra reps at any time.
MEET THE CAPTAINS
Sophomore walk-ons Kaitlyn Mullarkey and Kara Misel were voted 2015 captains by their teammates. Mullarkey stepped in last season when injuries created a spot in the field. She logged time in the outfield before joining the infield for the majority of the Big Ten season as Iowa’s first baseman. Misel appeared primarily as a pinch runner in 2014.
Iowa has made four Women’s College World Series appearances (1995, 1996, 1997, 2001) and played in 16 NCAA Tournaments in school history. The 16 appearances are the second most in Big Ten history, and the four WCWS appearances equal the second most in conference history. The Hawkeyes have won four Big Ten Conference regular season championships (1989, 1997, 2000, 2003) and two Big Ten Tournament titles (2001, 2003). Iowa holds a 1261-777-5 (.619) record in 37 seasons.
Iowa travels to Des Moines, Iowa, for a contest with Drake on Wednesday, April 1. First pitch is set for 5:30 p.m. (CT).