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Iowa Hawkeye Baseball: Hawks Sweep, Face Penn State in Big Ten Tournament

That went as expected (hoped); now on to Omaha for B1G Tourney

Syndication: HawkCentral
Hawks win, Hawks win, Hawks win!
Joseph Cress/Iowa City Press-Citizen / USA TODAY NETWORK

If the Iowa Hawkeyes find themselves in the NCAA Regionals, this past weekend and the upcoming Big Ten Tournament will have a lot to say about it. Iowa (33-17 / 17-7) took down Indiana 30-16 (yes, 30-16), 12-0, and 2-1 at Duane Banks Field in Iowa City. Iowa secured the three seed in the B1G Tournament that will be held this week.

Game 1: Hawks 30 - Indiana 16

The football analogies flew around Twitter like a Chuck Long pass to Jonathan Hayes after this slugfest. Iowa trailed by 11 runs in the fourth inning, only to win by 14 runs. I’ve never heard of anything like that. Iowa’s ace, Adam Mazur, threw his lone stinker (knock on wood) of the year. He went just two innings and gave up 9 earned runs. Cam Baumann relieved him and gave up four runs in two innings. Jacob Henderson got two batters out and didn’t allow an earned run, and Ducan Davitt pitched the final 4 13 innings allowing 2 earned runs. Now, the fun part...

Offensively, Kyle Huckstorf was a cheat code. Huckstorf was 6 for 7 and scored 4 runs. He hit 3 home runs and had 12 RBI’s. Huckstorf reminded me of Bob Horner for the Atlanta Braves when on July 6, 1986 Horner hit 4 home runs against the Montreal Expos. Horner quipped, “I had a good week today.” Classic. Here is a video that shows all 30 Hawk runs. Enjoy.

Game 2: Hawks 12 - Indiana 0

After Thursday night’s fireworks, Iowa’s bats continued at a torrid pace. The Hawkeye hurlers put up a big ol’ zero on the scoreboard for the Hoosiers. Dylan Nedved was the answer, at least for one night, as Iowa’s number two starter. He went six innings and gave up just one hit and no earned runs. He was a little wild walking four batters. He did strike out six. Nedved improved to 6-2 on the season with the win. Jared Simpson, Luke Llewellyn, and Will Christophersen pitched the final three innings without allowing a run. Iowa played a clean game defensively, not committing an error. From an offensive perspective Michael Seegers (shortstop) was 4 for 5 and drove in 4. Sam Hojnar (second base) was 3 for 4 with 3 RBI, and Sam Petersen (HR #6) and Keaton Anthony (HR #13) both hit long balls.

Game 3: Hawks 2 - Indiana 1

Iowa’s bats came back to Earth after the first two games. The Hawkeyes were outhit by the Hoosiers 8 to 3 but still ended up winning a nicely pitched ballgame. Ty Langenberg was sharp once again going 5 strong innings getting the start, allowing 4 hits and no runs. Connor Schultz pitched two innings, and Ben Beutel pitched the final two innings and picked up his fourth save. Langenberg improved to 6-2 on the year with an ERA of 3.61. Offensively Iowa didn’t muster many hits, but Keaton Anthony went yard for his 15th home run of the year. This was a series that was very important for the Hawks to sweep. Check. On to the Big Ten Tourney!

Big Ten Tourney: First up, Penn State

The Hawks begin their quest for a Big Ten Tournament championship and automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals at 9am on Wednesday, May 25th. The Hawks (3 seed) play Penn State (6 seed) for the first time this year. The Big Ten Tournament is an eight-team, double elimination tournament. Iowa sports a 10-5 record this season against the 8 teams that made the tourney.

Nittany Lions

Iowa will face Mason Mellott in the early game. Mellott is 3-4 this year with an ERA of 5.85 with 2 saves. He has appeared in 20 games but has only 4 starts. Opponents are batting .248 against him. Iowa will send ace Adam Mazur to the mound. Mazur has been phenomenal this year, with the exception of getting bombed in his last start. Penn has some good arms; their relief pitchers have better numbers than their starters. Probably the reason the Hawks may face all relievers in this contest. Offensively Penn State’s has three formidable batters. Matt Wood (.395/.494/.681), Jay Harry (.332/.406/.470), and Josh Spiegel (.305/.374/.558) can all do damage with the bat. The key will be for the Hawk pitchers to limit bases on balls and play solid defense.

Game Two: Rutgers or Purdue

Iowa’s second matchup will be either the Scarlet Knights or the Boilermakers. Iowa played both teams this season and went 2-1 against each. Everything starts fresh in a tournament setting, so it’s a what have you done for me lately mentality.

Image via BigTen.org

All games will be televised on the Big Ten Network and are also available on the Hawkeye Radio Network.

Stay tuned as there will be updates throughout Iowa’s hopeful-run to another Hawkeye postseason championship.