IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa softball team overwhelmed Purdue, 9-3, on Saturday at Pearl Field in the second of a three-game weekend series.
Freshman Emma Henderson got the start in the circle for the Hawkeyes throwing two innings.
Freshman Kat Serna threw five innings of relief with four strikeouts, taking the win. It was Serna’s second appearance of the week; she threw five scoreless innings in the win at UNI.
“I did not expect it, I just expected to be in the middle and get in some innings,” said Serna. “I didn’t think I would finish the game and get the win. Getting that many runs and going after it makes us that much more confident.”
Six players put up a collective 10 hits: junior Nia Carter leading with three — her 18th multi-hit game of the season — juniors Sophia Maras and Kalena Burns put up two, junior Sammy Diaz tallied one, and sophomores Grace Banes and Brylee Klosterman each registered one.
The nine RBIs came from five players. Burns notched three, Maras and Klosterman had two, while Banes and freshman Rylie Moss had one.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Iowa (21-30, 3-19) scored first with two runs in the first inning. Carter singled to left field. Later in the inning, Burns recorded a two-out RBI single to right field scoring Carter from second base. Maras then came to the plate, doubling to left field and tallying an RBI scoring Burns from first.
Purdue (23-30, 6-15) scored one run in the second inning and two more in the third to take the lead.
Iowa answered with a crooked number in the bottom of the fourth, scoring seven runs on five hits and a Boilermaker error. Maras and Diaz started the frame with back-to-back singles. Banes followed with an RBI bunt, bringing Maras home, advancing to second and moving Diaz to third. Peek then walked. Freshman Haley Downe then pinch ran for Diaz, and senior Kate Claypool pinch ran for Peek. Moss recorded a bases loaded RBI walk. Klosterman followed with a single to left, plating Banes and Downe. Following a Loecker walk, Burns singled to left field, scoring Klosterman and Moss. Maras closed the scoring with a sacrifice fly.
HEAR FROM HEAD COACH RENEE GILLISPIE
“They did a great job executing today. We’ve talked about it all season, being able to get clutch hits here and there. They executed hit and run, a squeeze play, Denali was able to tag on a fly ball. Everything we did in that one inning was execution. When we get that vibe and we see that energy, you could see how contagious it was. That’s what got us that inning.”
The Hawkeyes and Purdue conclude their three-game series tomorrow on “Senior Day”. First pitch is scheduled for noon (CT). Iowa will honor seniors Claypool and Riley Sheehy after the contest.