TAMPA, Fla. — The University of Iowa softball team split action on Friday at the South Florida Showdown. The Hawkeyes won a marathon against Marist, 8-7 (11 innings), before falling to Lehigh (3-1) in game two.
The Hawkeyes used three different arms against Marist. Sophomore Devyn Greer got the start and senior Breanna Vasquez got the win. Iowa finished the game with eight runs on 17 hits. Eight Hawkeye starters recorded a hit in the contest. Junior Brylee Klosterman went 3-for-5 and delivered the walk off RBI single in the 11th inning.
Vasquez got the start in game two of the day. She threw a complete game, allowing three unearned runs, on four hits while striking out six batters. Three Hawkeyes recorded a hit, led by sophomore Emma Henderson, who went 2-for-3 at the plate.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Both teams got two-out singles in the first, but neither team was able to get them past first base. Marist was able to get two runners on with one out in the top of the second, but a ground ball to freshman Tory Bennett started an inning-ending double play.
The Red Foxes struck first on a two-out RBI single in the third inning to take the lead, 1-0. Greer was able to limit the damage as she stranded two runners to end the frame. Marist extended its lead to 4-0 on a three-run home run in the fourth. E. Henderson entered the circle in relief with two-outs in the inning.
In the home half of the fourth, Klosterman and sophomore Tristin Doster each had a two-out single to get runners into scoring position for the first time but were both left stranded.
Iowa got things going in the fifth as its first two batters reached base. Junior Denali Loecker brought both runs home with a stand-up triple to left center to cut the Marist lead in half, 4-2. Junior Grace Banes followed it up with an RBI single up the middle to get within one. The first five Hawkeye hitters of the inning reached base. Iowa tied it up with an RBI single off the bat of sophomore Tristin Doster.
Henderson made quick work of the Red Foxes in the top of the sixth, sitting them down in order. Freshman Anna Streff and Carter reached base to open the bottom of the sixth inning. They were sitting at second and third with one out. An intentional walk to Loecker loaded the bases with two outs, but Iowa left them loaded to end the inning with the score tied, 4-4.
Both teams went quietly in the seventh to send the game into extra innings. In extras, the teams started with a runner on second, due to the international tie breaker rule. Marist took the lead, 5-4, in the top of the ninth on a single to center. Iowa tied it in bottom of the inning on a ball put in play by Banes. The Hawkeyes loaded the bases with two outs, and Henderson put a charge into one, but it was caught at the fence to end the inning.
Marist retook the lead in the 10th, 6-5, on an RBI double. In the bottom of the inning, Iowa loaded the bases with no outs. A sac-fly from freshman Tory Bennett scored Streff to tie the game.
The Red Foxes took a one run lead yet again in the 11th. Following suit, Iowa tied it, 7-7, on an RBI single from junior Sammy Diaz. Klosterman stepped in and sent a ball up the middle to score Diaz to secure the walk-off win for Iowa.
Game two had a lot less offense than the first. Lehigh jumped out in front, 2-0, on an inside-the-park home run in the second inning. Iowa got a runner on base in each of the first four innings, but was unable to cash in. In the bottom of the fourth, Lehigh extended its lead, 3-0.
In the fifth inning, Streff had a one-out single and was able to get to third with two outs, but was left stranded. Freshman Avery Jackson ended the bottom of the fifth with an amazing leaping grab at third to strand a Mountain Hawk runner at second.
The Hawkeyes got two on via the walk in the top of the seventh inning. Sophomore Tatianna Roman got the Hawkeyes on the board with an RBI groundout to make it 3-1.
Iowa finished the game with one run on four hits and had two errors.
HEAR FROM BRYLEE KLOSTERMAN
“In the first game I really tried to relax, stick to my game plan, and play with confidence. All three of our pitchers worked so hard in that game so I was trying to do anything I could to help us come out with a victory.”
- Iowa is now 2-2 on the season in extra-inning games.
- Henderson had the longest outing of her career going 6.1 innings.
- 21 different Hawkeyes appeared in game one.
- Game one was Iowa’s longest inning game since May 6, 2017.
Iowa (17-10) returns to action on Saturday for the second day of South Florida Showdown. The Hawkeyes will open the day against host, USF, at 3:32 p.m. (CT) followed by No. 9 Texas at 6 p.m. (CT). The game against USF will be streamed on ESPN+ (subscription required). Both games will have radio broadcast available on Hawkeye Sports Radio.