By JAMES ALLAN
HONOLULU, Hawaii — Hawaii rallied from a 7-1 deficit to hand the University of Iowa baseball team an 8-7 loss in 10 innings Sunday afternoon at Les Murakami Stadium. The Rainbow Warriors scored the game’s final seven runs to earn a weekend split.
Iowa led 7-6 in the bottom of the ninth inning with two outs before Hawaii rallied. A two-out walk from Logan Pouelsen started the comeback before pinch runner Daylen Calicdan scored following three straight wild pitches from reliever Kyle Shimp tied the game at seven.
Hawaii won the game in the 10th on an RBI single from Alex Baeza.
The Hawkeyes built their lead behind a strong offensive day from four and five-hole hitters Tanner Padgett and Ben Norman. The duo combined for seven hits (three extra base hits), five RBIs, and four runs scored.
Padgett finished 4-for-5 with a double and two RBIs, while Norman was 3-for-5 with a double, home run, three RBIs, and three runs scored.
After falling behind 1-0 in the first, Iowa tied the game in the second on an RBI from Lorenzo Elion before Norman connected on a two-run home run in the third. The outfielder hit a 2-2 pitch — a ball that kept carrying over the wall in right center field — to give Iowa a 3-1 lead.
The Hawkeyes put up three more runs in the fifth on three hits and it could have been more. Padgett’s third hit — an RBI single — made the score 4-1 and Norman followed with an RBI double to right field. Iowa loaded the bases with nobody out, but managed to score just one run on a Justin Jenkins walk.
Iowa added to its lead on Padgett’s fourth hit — an RBI double in the sixth. Hawaii hit a solo home run in the sixth — a Baeza blast down the right field line — off reliever Trenton Wallace.
The Rainbow Warriors put up four runs in the seventh to close to within 7-6.
Hawaii reliever Dylan Thomas earned the win, allowing one run on two hits over the final five innings. He struck out nine of the 18 batters he faced.
QUOTING HEAD COACH RICK HELLER
“Grant Judkins gave us a good start and we swung the bats early in the game. Even with a 7-1 lead, we had several opportunities to get a run here and there to break it wide open. We didn’t do it and had some bad at-bats with runners in scoring position.
“We went to the bullpen and things got crazy and out-of-hand. We walked a bunch of guys and gave up a ton of free bases from our pitching staff that ultimately led to our demise. We didn’t touch Thomas the last five innings, he was the story.”
- Junior Ben Norman tied a career-high with three runs and his second-inning home run was his second of the season and third of his career.
- Iowa finished with 10 hits — its fourth game with 10 or more hits this season.
- The Hawkeyes have homered in five of their seven games this season.
Iowa returns to action Friday, opening a three-game series at No. 19 Oklahoma State. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. (CT) in Stillwater, Oklahoma.