LEESBURG, Florida – The University of Iowa softball team dropped a pair of games in a doubleheader against No. 17 Michigan on Saturday afternoon in Leesburg, Florida. Michigan won the first game, 2-0, and the second game, 6-5.
Senior pitcher Allison Doocy made her season debut for the Hawkeyes in Game 1, allowing only two runs in a complete game effort.
Two freshmen pitchers, Denali Loecker and Maggie Peterson made their Hawkeye debuts in Game 2. The Hawkeyes rallied late in the second game but were never able to overcome the six-run deficit.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Michigan got on the board in the top of the second when Thais Gonzalez was hit by a pitch and came around to score. Michigan’s second run came in the top of the seventh when Lexie Blair was hit by a pitch and was eventually plated by a Taylor Bump single. Iowa threatened in the second and third innings, but Loecker was left stranded in the second after a leadoff double, and Brylee Klosterman was left on base following a leadoff single in the third.
Michigan got the scoring started with a big bottom half of the second inning, scoring four of their six runs after a double, two singles, and a homerun. The Hawkeyes answered back with a run of their own in the fourth after Nia Carter singled and crossed the plate on a double steal. Michigan added two more runs in the bottom of the fourth to stretch its lead to 6-1. The Hawkeyes rallied with four runs in the seventh. Iowa loaded the bases with a Lindy Milkowski single, and a base on balls from DoniRae Mayhew and Ashley Hamilton. Amber DeSena drew a walk to bring home one run. Riley Sheehy singled to bring home two RBIs, and Carter hit an RBI single to bring home Iowa’s final run. Carter was thrown out trying to reach second base to end the game.
- Five of Iowa’s nine starters in game two were true freshmen
- Carter is batting .500 on the season in 14 plate appearances; she leads the team with three RBIs
- Loecker has two doubles on the season.
HEAR FROM COACH GILLISPIE
“Doocy did a great job. She pitched a solid game, we just did not have the offense behind her to be able to come up with the runs we needed. Michigan is a tough team to beat, they are solid. They had two solid pitchers that kept us off balance all day. We did not make the adjustments we needed to. Despite that, I thought Nia had good at bats. Grace Banes had good at bats; she was seeing it really well today.”
“We had the opportunity to win. We had the winning run on base and we ran ourselves out of it. It is a growing experience for us, we are young. Five of our nine were freshman out there. We are still learning to win and compete. We are seeing some good things, but we still have a lot of work to do.”
Next up for Iowa is a doubleheader against Michigan State starting Sunday at 8 a.m (CT). Both games will be streamed on BTN+ (Subscription required).