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Hawkeyes win mid-week, drop series at Ole Miss

By Jack Delperdang

The Iowa Hawkeyes opened week three of their 2024 season with a mid-week game against Northern Illinois before heading down to Oxford for a three game set against Ole Miss.

Now, let's recap the Hawkeyes week.

Game 1: Iowa 14, Northern Illinois 6

The Hawkeyes once again started fast at the plate and quickly removed the hesitation fans might have regarding a season-changing upset. Iowa scored runs in each of the first three innings, jumping out to a big lead. The first five batters of the game reached including a pair of two run home runs from Sam Petersen and Davis Cop. Blake Guerin doubled home a run later in the inning to make it 5-0. Two more runs in the second and one more in the third made it 8-0. The Hawkeyes also scored four runs in the fifth inning after the Huskies plated three in the top half.

On the mound, Iowa went with TCU transfer Justin Hackett, but he did not last long. After walking two of the first three hitters, Hackett was pulled. The Hawkeyes got scoreless outings in relief from Jack Young, Brant Hogue, Caleb Strack, Chas Wheatley, Aaron Savary and Ganon Archer.

Offensively, the Hawkeyes had 11 batters record a hit. Reese Moore led the way, reaching base four times, including a pair of doubles. Moore, along with Sam Petersen, Raider Tello and Blake Guerin recorded multiple hits in the game.

Game 2: Iowa 13, Ole Miss 7

Brody Brecht took the hill in Oxford as the Hawkeyes looked to take game one against a suddenly surging Ole Miss team. Through two and a half innings it looked as though this might be a pitcher’s duel. Brecht and Rebels starter Gunnar Norris went pitch for pitch and matched zero for zero. Ole Miss loaded the bases with nobody out in the third thanks to a pair of bunt singles and took the lead via an Andrew Fischer walk. Brecht, however, buckled down and recorded a pair or strikeouts and a pop out to end the inning. That was just three of the 17 base runners left on base by the home team.

Iowa came right back and took the lead thanks to a Sam Petersen single and a Raider Tello two run home run. Brecht ran into more trouble in the bottom half, loading the bases again, but recording a strikeout and groundout to keep the lead. The Hawkeyes scored three more in the fifth on a Davis Cop two out bases clearing double. Ethan Lege homered in the bottom half, which was the final inning for Brecht.

Brecht's Line: (ND) 5.0 IP / 5 H / 2 R / 1 ER / 2 BB / 11 K / 103 P.

Last weekend in Jacksonville the Hawkeyes bullpen recorded just three scoreless innings and if they were to hold onto a three run lead, they would need a few more. Enter Anthony Watts. Watts gave Rick Heller a pair of scoreless frames in the sixth and seventh, while the offense went back to work. Reese Moore came to the plate with two outs and the bases loaded in the seventh. He came through with a two run single to give Iowa a pair of insurance runs that would be needed very soon.

A pair of walks to start the eighth was the end of the line for Watts. Brant Hogue entered and was immediately greeted by an Ethan Groff single to load the bases. A pair of sacrifice flies later made it 7-4. After back to back walks loaded the bases back up, Jack Young came in. He walked in two and it was 7-6. True freshman Elliot Cadieux-Lanoue was then thrown into the fire. He gave up a free base to tie the game, but struck out Raegan Burforf to end the inning. The Rebels scored five runs on just one hit, while drawing seven walks.

How do you answer a five spot? With six of your own, of course. Before Ole Miss could blink in the ninth, the Hawkeyes had them loaded with nobody out. Raider Tello and Davis Cop singled. Reese Moore was then hit and it was go time. Kyle Huckstorf and Ben Wilmes both delivered with a pair of two RBI singles, while Gable Mitchell walked with the bases loaded and Sam Petersen hit a sacrifice fly. Jack Whitlock was shaky in the ninth, but closed the game out with a scoreless inning.

Game 3: Ole Miss 12, Iowa 5

Saturday was a different story as Marcus Morgan took the ball looking to clinch the series win for the Hawkeyes. For the second consecutive weekend he struggled. Iowa jumped out to a 1-0 lead before he even threw a pitch, but Andrew Fischer homered in the bottom half of the first to tie the game.

The Hawkeyes scored four runs in the third thanks to some sloppy defense from Ole Miss and a two run homer from Andy Nelson. JT Quinn was pulled from the game, lasting just 2.2 innings. The Rebels scored a run in the bottom of the third inning and two in the fourth on Andrew Fischer’s second home run of the game, this one a two run bomb. Morgan was pulled in the fifth with the bases loaded and just one out. Two runs came across for Ole Miss and they never looked back. 

Morgan’s Line: (L) 4.1 IP / 7 H / 6 ER / 4 BB / 5 K / 88 P.

Mitch Murrell, Austin Simmons, Josh Mallitz and Sam Tookoian held the Hawkeyes scoreless over the final 6.1 innings, although Iowa threatened in the seventh and eighth innings. The Rebels created separation in the bottom half of the eighth with a five spot that again saw the Iowa bullpen struggle to throw strikes. Five hitters reached on a hit by pitch or walk. After struggling to get the big hit with bases loaded in game one and most of game two it was Andrew Fisher who continued his big day with a single down the left field line that scored a pair.

Game 4: Ole Miss 8, Iowa 3

With a 5-5 record heading into Sunday, the Hawkeyes were obviously falling short of expectations to start the season. However, this was a chance to right those wrongs with a road series win against an SEC opponent. Instead, Iowa played their worst game of the season and got blown off the field. Through three innings, Cade Obermueller and Grayson Saunier traded zeroes back and forth.

Ole Miss took the lead when Judd Utermark walked, advanced to second on a wild pitch and then scored on back to back sacrifice flies. The Rebels loaded the bases in the fifth and Obermueller was pulled for Zach Voelker when he walked Jackson Ross to bring in a run. Ole Miss scored three more runs in the frame and took a 4-0 lead.

Obermueller’s Line: (L) 4.0 IP / 2 H / 5 R / 4 ER / 5 BB / 4 K / 94 P.

Saunier ended up going five scoreless innings with just two hits allowed. Eli Berch kept the offense rolling with a solo home run in the sixth and the Rebels scored two more in the seventh against three different pitchers. Jack Young struck out Jackson Ross with the bases loaded and two outs to keep the game alive. Sam Petersen walked to start the eighth, Reese Moore doubled him home and Kyle Huckstorf hit a two run homer to cut the lead to five, but the Hawkeyes got nothing else in a disappointing series loss.

Up next, Iowa returns to Duane Banks Field for a mid-week matchup against St. Thomas on Tuesday at 4:05 pm CT.


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