Softball comes out ahead in first competition of the season

BY BEN ROSS | FEBRUARY 11, 2013 5:00 AM

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The Hawkeyes defeated No. 11 Louisiana-Lafayette to highlight the commencement of the softball season.

The Iowa softball team opened up competition for the 2013 season this past weekend, competing as a part of the Hilton Houston Plaza Classic in Houston.

The Hawkeyes played five games — one each against Lipscomb, Texas State, and Houston and two against Louisiana-Lafayette, going 3-2.

Iowa lost its season-opener, 4-0, against Lipscomb. Bison hurler Tanner Sanders held Iowa to just two hits in seven innings of work. The Iowa offense made a surge in its next game, though.

The Hawkeyes trailed 4-1 in the bottom of the seventh against Texas State. Redshirt freshman catcher Holly Hoffman smacked the first home run of her career to make the score 4-3. Sophomore shortstop Megan Blank then hit a 2-run go-ahead double to right field to put her squad up 5-4 — a lead Iowa held.

“I had talked to coach [Stacy May-Johnson] about the adjustments I needed to make,” Hoffman said in a release. “I made the adjustments, and everything fell into place. It was the best feeling. You cannot describe it, especially, coming from behind. It changed our momentum; everyone was ecstatic.”

Iowa then downed host Houston, 4-1, thanks in large part to solo home runs launched by Bradi Wall and Blank. The win came before the Hawkeyes split games with Louisiana-Lafayette in the final contests.

The Black and Gold won the first, a barnburner that ended 13-10. Iowa recorded 14 hits, and five Hawkeyes recorded 2 runs — Blank, Hoffman, first baseman Brianna Luna, third baseman Michelle Zoeller, and right-fielder Sammi Gyerman.

Iowa couldn’t reproduce its performance the following day against the Cajuns, falling 11-0 in five innings.

The Hawkeyes will return to the Lone Star State next week to partake in the Lovelace Invitational in Denton.

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