Big 5th Inning Sends PSU Past Iowa

Box Score

April 22, 2016

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — An eight-run fifth inning lifted the Nittany Lions to an 8-3 victory over the University of Iowa softball team Friday night at Bob Pearl Field. Penn State took a 1-0 lead in the three-game series with the win.


“Our girls came out ready to play today and we knew after practice yesterday that they were ready to roll,” said UI head coach Marla Looper. “Shayla gave us a great start, but Penn State is a good club, a good offensive club. They didn’t need power hits. They just needed to find a hole. They just kept piecing hits together.”

The Hawkeyes struck first, finding the scoreboard in the bottom of the second. Freshman Mallory Kilian won a battle at the plate, drawing a two-out walk. Senior Whitney Repole followed with her second home run of the season — a two-run blast to left — to give the Hawkeyes a 2-0 lead.

Penn State fought back in the top of the fifth. The Nittany Lions scored eight runs on nine hits — all singles — to take an 8-2 lead.

Iowa got one back in the sixth. Senior Erin Erickson led off the inning with a double down the left field line, before junior Claire Fritsch moved her over with a single to left. Kilian came through with an RBI single to center to pull the Hawkeyes within five runs, 8-3.

The Hawkeyes loaded the bases in the seventh, but could not put a run across as the Nittany Lions held on to win, 8-3.

Shayla Starkenburg (4-11) took the loss in the circle. The redshirt junior retired the first 10 batters she faced before giving up seven straight singles in the top of the fifth. Starkenburg allowed seven earned runs on eight hits. She did not surrender a walk and struck out four in four innings of work. Sophomore Ashley Yoways gave up an earned run in relief, and freshman Erin Riding threw two and 2/3 scoreless innings.

Iowa tallied 11 hits on the day, but left 10 runners on base. Sophomore Cheyenne Pratt, junior Kaitlyn Mullarkey, redshirt junior Sammi Gyerman, and Fritsch each registered two hits apiece in the contest.

“We had plenty of chances tonight,” said Looper. “We just left way too many runners on. We had great opportunities to score and we didn’t capitalize on those and we can’t have that.”

The Hawkeyes (12-31; 2-13) and Nittany Lions continue the three-game set tomorrow. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. (CT) from Bob Pearl Field. Saturday is also Awareness Day as the Hawkeyes will honor the seven organizations they volunteer at throughout the year. The first 100 fans will receive free Awareness Day t-shirts.

Penn State 8, Iowa 3 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
Penn State 25-17; 12-3) 0 0 0 0 8 0 0 8 11 1
Iowa (12-31; 2-13) 0 2 0 0 0 1 0 3 11 0
Game Decision
W: Laubach (PSU) 10-8
L: Starkenburg (IOWA) 4-11
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