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Cornhuskers Lose a Frustrating Game One, 11-6 to Iowa

15 strikeouts, brings Nebraskas juggernaut offense to a screeching halt.

Nebraska Athletic Department

What could have very have been a pitcher’s dual between two of the top starters in the Big Ten Conference . . . wasn't. Iowa put flamethrower Brody Brecht out on the mound to take on Nebraska's 5-1 ace Emmett Olson, but as it ended up, both of them struggled mightily for the second straight Friday. Olson ended up leaving the game with one out in the third inning after giving up five runs on six hits, along with two walks and two hit batters. Brecht made it a little further, leaving after loading the bases in the fifth. He notched seven walks, seven strikeouts, while giving up four runs on two hits. Fans of well-pitched games were disappointed.

Olson did start off the game well, notching three strikeouts in the bottom of the first inning, but then Iowa struck gold in the second. They batted around the order and scored five runs after Olson issued a lead-off walk to Kyle Huckstorf. Then four Hawkeyes had hits and Olson plunked their best hitter, Keegan Anthony. The Hawkeyes had a solid plan for Olson as all of their hits went the opposite way to right field. They showed patience at the plate and forced Olson deep into the count as they waited for the outside breaking pitches to drive.

Nebraska also came in with a game plan to make Brecht throw a lot of pitches, which was effective to a point, other than they were not able to capitalize with runners on base until the fourth inning. In that inning, Garrett Anglim and Charlie Fischer both worked a walk from Brecht and advanced 90-feet on his third wild pitch of the game. Anglim then scored on a Dylan Carey single. Fischer scored on another wild pitch, cutting into Iowa's lead. However, Iowa took back one of those runs as they scored one more in the bottom of the fourth. It was 6-2 going to the fifth inning.

Brice Matthews led off the Nebraska fifth inning with a double, just the second hit off Brecht. Casey Burnham was then hit by a pitch and Max Anderson drew a walk. That was the end of the night for Brecht, who left with the bases loaded and no outs. Jack Whitlock came on in relief and struck out Garrett Anglim before Charlie Fischer hit an RBI single and Gabe Swansenfollowed with a sacrifice fly. However, hopes for a big inning flamed out, though Nebraska did claw back to make it 6-4 Hawkeyes.

At this point in the game, one would think that Iowa had the advantage because of the superiority of their bullpen. That turned out to be the case. Hawkeye pitching basically shut down the Nebraska offense over the course of the next three innings, giving up no runs and only three hits. Nebraska's pen was not nearly as effective.

While Corbin Hawkins regrouped in the fifth and sixth innings, Jake Bunz and Shay Schanaman combusted in the seventh. Iowa batted around for the second time in the game and scored five more runs. Both Bunz and Schanaman gave free passes to Hawkeye batters and hits that moved black and yellow players around the bases. When it was all over Iowa scored five more runs giving them an 11-4 lead.

Nebraska did not mail it in as they tacked on two more runs in their half of the ninth inning, and actually had the tying run at the plate in pinch-hitter Griffin Everitt before he flew out to end the game. The final score was 11-6 Iowa.

Overall, it was far from a well-played game. The two pitching staffs issued 23 walks and hit nine batters. There were only three extra base hits, with Keegan Anthony from Iowa getting two of them. And, even though Iowa had a commanding lead going into the ninth inning, Nebraska persevered and had a chance to tie it up.

It is a frustrating loss for Nebraska as the pitching staff did not throw enough strikes and the offense only came through with seven hits. Tomorrow is another day and if recent years are a barometer, Nebraska will fight back and it will be a hard-fought game. Jace Kaminska will return to his Saturday starting role and looking to return to his early season form.


Nebraska's home run streak has ended at 13 games.

Saturday’s game starts at 2:05 p.m.