With the game tied 4-4 in the ninth, Travis Sweet walked and Dusty Napoleon looked to give Iowa the lead with a towering fly ball to right-centerfield that was caught up against the fence for the second out. Sweet then stole second. Caleb Curry followed that with a high chopper to short that he beat out at first. Sweet, who never broke stride from second, came around to score the go-ahead run.
Mike Schurz earned the win to run his record to 6-1. Andrew Porter pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save.
The Hawkeyes got on the board in the top of the first on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Curry.
Iowa starter Mike Jacobs didn't allow a baserunner in the first two innings, but the Panthers were able to get to him in the bottom of the third, loading the bases with no outs on three singles - two of which that didn't leave the infield. Northern Iowa plated their first run on a fielder's choice. Then scoreed on a single from Eric Hoffman and took a 3-1 lead on a wild pitch.
The Hawkeyes threatened in the top of the fourth, getting two runners in scoring position for catcher Ben Geelan, who hit a rocket that was caught on the warning track for the third out. Iowa put runners on in the fifth and sixth, only to be turned away empty handed each time.
The Black and Gold finally broke through in the top of the seventh, plating a trio of runs to take a 4-3 lead. Justin Toole, Jason White and Sweet all walked to load the bases with no outs. Napoleon then took the fourth walk of the inning to plate the first run, and Curry delivered his second sacrifice fly of the game to tie things up. With runners on the corners, Matt Wooldrik struck out on a hit and run, but Napoleon was able to get into a run-down between first and second, which allowed Sweet to scamper home with the go-ahead run before Napoleon was tagged out.
The Panthers tied the game up with a sacrifice squeeze in the bottom of the eighth.
The Hawkeyes return to action tomorrow night with a game at Western Illinois. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.