"We played very fundamentally sound baseball tonight," Head Coach Jack Dahm said. "We manufactured runs, ran the bases well and just played good, smart baseball. We are a fun team to watch when we play like that."
The Leathernecks jumped out to a quick lead, scoring two in the bottom of the first. The Hawkeyes rallied to narrow the lead, scoring one in the home half of the first. Jason White reached on an infield hit and scored on a Dusty Napoleon fly out to right. Western Illinois added another run in the top of the fourth to stretch the lead to 3-1.
Justin Brauer led off the fourth with a walk and scored on a Justin Toole single to right. Kevin Hoef singled and scored on a White single. Travis Sweet singled to drive in Toole. White scored on a Caleb Curry single to right. Sweet and Dusty Napoleon both scored unearned runs when Matt Wooldrik hit into what should have been an inning ending double play. A throwing error by the Leatherneck shortstop allowed the runs to come home.
Sweet reached on a dropped third strike to reach in the sixth, and scored on a Curry single; Curry advanced to second on the throw from the right fielder and then stole third. Wooldrik was the next batter and drove in Curry on a single.
White went 3-5, scoring twice and driving in one to lead the Iowa offense. Sweet was 2-5 with two runs scored and one RBI. Curry, Wooldrik, Hoef and Toole each added two hits on the night. Chase Stephens started on the hill for the Hawkeyes, going four 1/3 innings, scattering five hits, allowing three runs, three walks and striking out two. Brock Alberts came in relief, throwing three 2/3 innings. Alberts only gave up one run, which was unearned, walked one and struck out four. George Rasiarmos finished off the seventh inning, not allowing a base runner and striking out one.
The Hawkeyes will return to action Wednesday night at Duane Banks Field when they host the Upper Iowa Peacocks. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.