Baseball wins offensive battle

BY DI STAFF | APRIL 21, 2011 7:20 AM

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The Iowa baseball team (14-20) smacked 14 hits and posted four multi-run innings in a 14-8 win over Western Illinois (11-25) on Wednesday in Davenport.

Third baseman Kasey Carling led the offensive blitz with three hits and three runs scored in five trips to the plate. Trevor Willis, Kurt Lee, Bryan Niedbalski, and Keith Brand also had multi-hit games, and Willis legged out his seventh triple of the season to move into a five-way tie for second-most in the country.

Reliever Phil Keppler (1-0) picked up the win despite giving up three runs — all unearned — in 22⁄3 innings of work. He led the five Hawkeye pitchers that saw action with four strikeouts. Starter Ricky Sandquist struggled, lasting just 21⁄3 innings and giving up five runs on five hits. He walked one, hit a batter, and gave up a pair of home runs.

Western Illinois struck first, plating a run in the first inning, but Iowa responded with four runs in the top of the second. The teams scored in bunches, trading multi-run third and fifth innings before Hawkeye relievers Tim Fangman, Jeff Pacha, and Zach Kenyon slammed the door on the Leathernecks.

"I was excited about the way we played tonight," head coach Jack Dahm said in a statement. "We played with a lot of energy. I like the way we responded after they scored some runs on us, [and] we executed pretty well from an offensive standpoint."

— by Seth Roberts

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