LEESBURG, Fla. – The University of Iowa softball team (5-4) defeated Penn State (0-9), 2-0, in eight innings Friday in Leesburg, Florida, completing the season sweep of the Nittany Lions.
Senior pitcher Sarah Lehman pitched eight innings to earn the complete game shutout. She improved to 3-1 in the circle on the season.
“It felt good with the defense behind me,” said Lehman. “Being really confident in them and being able to throw whatever felt really good. We had good energy in the dugout. I think we all knew we could do it. We just kept going at them.”
Freshman Brylee Klosterman hit home the go-ahead run on a single in the top of the eighth inning, she was 2-for-3 on the day. Sophomore Nia Carter was 2-for-4 and freshman Denali Loecker hit her team leading fifth double of the season.
“Sarah pitched a heck of a game. I just wanted to do anything I could to back her up,” said Klosterman. “She was throwing really great pitches. Defensively, I wanted to back her up. Offensively we had really great energy. I just wanted to do anything for the team, to get on base and do my job.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
Defense was the name of the game in the first seven innings as both teams were held scoreless. The Hawkeyes broke through in the top of the eighth. Zoe Schulte started the inning on second base and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Klosterman drove her home for Iowa’s first run. Sammy Diaz drew a walk and Nia Carter bunted for a single to load the bases. Riley Sheehy reached on a fielding error that would plate Iowa’s second run. In the bottom of the eighth, Penn State put runners on second to third, but a running catch in the gap by Klosterman ended the game.
- The Hawkeyes retired the first batter for Penn State in every inning.
- The Hawkeye pitching staff has not allowed an earned run this weekend.
- Lehman has pitched a complete game in all four of her appearances this season.
HEAR FROM HEAD COACH RENEE GILLISPIE
“Great performance from Sarah going eight innings for us and keeping us in that game. She gave us a chance to get the bats going in that eighth inning. It seemed like our hitters did a great job of making contact, but Penn State did a great job on defense and were cutting a lot of those hits down. Looking at Klosterman, what a catch on that last play. She really stepped up all game long on both sides. Making things happen for us. Every day we are getting a little bit better, and we are looking forward to playing against Maryland.”
The Hawkeyes return to the diamond tomorrow with two games against Maryland at 9 a.m. (CT) and 11:30 a.m.