CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — The University of Iowa softball team snapped Northern Iowa’s 16-game win streak with a 3-2 win on Wednesday evening at the Robinson-Dresser Sports Complex.
Freshman Emma Henderson got the start for the Hawkeyes throwing two innings. Freshman Katherine Serna earned her first career win throwing five innings of scoreless relief while striking out four.
“I had a lot of energy,” said Serna. “The defense was wonderful. The outfield did a great job, especially Rylie with that catch at the wall. I was more confident than usual. Today was that type of day where I was feeling it.”
Junior Nia Carter was a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate scoring two runs.
“Today I told myself to play more relaxed,” said Carter. “I tried to slow the game down and look for early opportunities in my at-bats. I had faith in my teammates that they would get me in if I got on, so I did everything I could to be in that position.”
Junior Kalena Burns was 2-for-4 while tallying three RBIs. Junior Sophia Maras drew two walks.
The Hawkeyes outhit the Panthers, 9-5, improving to 16-2 when collecting more hits than their opponents this season.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Iowa (20-29) opened the game plating a run in the first inning. Carter doubled down the left field line and Burns brought her in with a single.
UNI (29-12) evened the score in the bottom half with a walk, single, and sacrifice fly. The Panthers took a lead in the second with a solo home run to left center.
The Hawkeyes scored two runs in the third to regain the lead, which they would not relinquish. Carter beat out an infield single to third base, Loecker singled to left and advanced to second. Burns hit a sacrifice fly to plate Carter, and Loecker would come around to score on an error.
HEAR FROM HEAD COACH RENEE GILLISPIE
“I am excited for Emma and Kat to be able to come in and cut them down and keep them to five hits. To be able to do that against a good hitting team was huge. That was the difference in the game. Kalena came up with some big hits tonight. Nia was 4-for-4, laying down the bunts being able to move runners and get on. We struggled with that before, but she did a great job executing tonight.”
The Hawkeyes host Purdue (22-29, 5-14) at Pearl Field for a three-game series Friday through Sunday.