March 27, 2015
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By CHRIS BREWER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Junior Tyler Peyton used his bat and his arm to carry the University of Iowa baseball team to a 2-0 win over No. 19 Indiana on Friday afternoon at Duane Banks Field.
Peyton pitched a complete game shutout and drove in both of Iowa’s runs to give the Hawkeyes a win in their Big Ten opener for the second straight season.
“It feels good that we won, that’s it,” Peyton said after striking out five and allowing five hits in his first career shutout. “It doesn’t matter how I do or how anyone else does. As long as we win I’m pretty happy.”
The Hawkeyes scored a run in the first and added another in the eighth to end an eight-game skid against the two-time defending Big Ten champions.
“It’s a great start against a great team,” said UI head coach Rick Heller. “I thought our guys handled things real professionally. We were a little sloppy on defense early on but we cleaned it up.”
Eric Toole put Iowa on the board in the top of the first when he doubled to lead off the inning and came in to score on Peyton’s RBI groundout. Toole’s leadoff double extended his hitting streak to 13 games, matching his career high.
“That was outstanding,” said Heller. “Eric Toole hits a double down the line to start the game off and put a run on the board early. It let everyone take a deep breath and go out and play.”
Indiana had its opportunities in the fourth inning. A base running miscue erased a Craig Dedelow double, and after a two-out error by shortstop Nick Roscetti, Peyton got Scott Donley to fly out to left field.
The Hoosiers then put the tying run on third with one out in the fifth but did not score. Peyton hit Logan Sowers to open the inning and advanced him to second on an errant pickoff throw. Sowers moved to third on a sac bunt, but Peyton stranded him there with a swinging strikeout and looping lineout.
The Hoosiers threatened for the final time in the eighth. With two outs Isaiah Pasteur reached on an infield single and went to third on Laren Eustace’s single to center. Following a visit to the mound, Peyton induced Casey Rodrigue into a pop out to end the inning.
“I wasn’t even thinking about taking him out,”said Heller. “I just wanted everyone on the same page with the first and third situation so that they didn’t end up stealing a run on trick play. I just wanted to make sure we had the right play on, that was the only thought there.”
The Hawkeyes scored an insurance run in the eighth inning to push their lead to 2-0. Nick Day reached on an infield single and advanced to second when Jake Mangler drew a base on balls. With one out, Peyton stepped in and hit a bouncer between second and third base. Indiana’s shortstop let the ball run up his arm and Day came around third to score on the error.
Peyton took the ball in the ninth and set Indiana’s two, three, and four hitters down in order to complete the win. He improved to 3-2 on the year.
“Tyler was the story. He was fantastic today,” said Heller. “The complete game helps because we didn’t have to go to the bullpen and now we have a loaded bullpen for the rest of the series. That’s always a good thing
Indiana’s Caleb Baragar (0-1) took the loss. He entered the game with an ERA under one, and finished the game with five strikeouts and one earned run in seven innings.
“Their lefthander was outstanding,” said Heller. “He mowed us down most of the day. I thought our at-bats got better the middle couple innings and scratching a run there late was big.
“Their pitching doesn’t get any worse. It will keep getting better and better.”
The Hawkeyes (15-6, 1-0) and Hoosiers (16-6, 1-2) meet Saturday for Game 2 of the series at 2 p.m. (CT). Iowa will send RHP Blake Hickman (2-1, 3.19) to the mound. Indiana will counter with RPH Jake Kelzer (1-0, 3.27).