Da Boot Sports
LSU Sports Communications
By: William Franques
ROUND ROCK, Texas – Iowa pitchers held top-ranked LSU to four hits Saturday afternoon en route to a 12-4 victory during Day 2 of the Round Rock Classic held at Dell Diamond.
The Tigers will face Sam Houston at 4 p.m. CT Sunday to conclude the Round Rock Classic at Dell Diamond. The game will be broadcast on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, and it will be streamed on a pay-per-view subscription basis by D1Baseball.com.
LSU (5-1) returns to action Sunday to take on the Sam Houston Bearkats for the second game of the day and the final one of the tournament. The contest is scheduled for a 4:00 p.m. CT start and can be viewed on D1Baseball.com via a pay-per-view subscription. The game can also be heard on the LSU Sports Radio Network affiliates.
LSU starter Riley Cooper (1-1) was charged with the loss after firing three innings and giving up five runs on seven hits. Hawkeyes reliever Jared Simpson picked up his first victory of the season after tossing 4.2 innings and allowing two runs on three hits.
Iowa starter Brody Brecht stifled the LSU lineup for 3.1 innings before being lifted for Simpson. He allowed two runs on one hit during his second outing of the season.
The Hawkeyes opened the scoring in the bottom of the first with a home run to right field from designated hitter Keaton Anthony. The Hawkeyes extended the lead following a walk and two singles and took a 3-0 lead in the first after left-fielder Sam Petersen touched home plate on a double steal.
LSU threatened in the bottom half of the first, loading the bases with no outs, but Brecht escaped trouble with three straight strikeouts.
“We didn’t slow the game down well enough,” said LSU coach Jay Johnson. “Maybe if we take just one more good at-bat, the game might have been a little been different. We set the table with the bases loaded and nobody out in the first inning, but you’ve got to give Brecht credit for getting out of it. There weren’t many pitches from him in that sequence that were easy to put in play.”
After both teams went scoreless in the second, Iowa added a run in the third with a single and RBI double, making the margin 4-0. The Hawkeyes increased the score to 7-0 with a three-run fourth.
In the first four innings, LSU loaded the bases, including the bottom half of the fourth frame. The Tigers got there with three free passes, and centerfielder Dylan Crews came through with a 2-RBI single to make the score 7-2.
LSU right-hander Will Hellmers took over in the top of the fifth for fellow reliever Sam Dutton and pitched three consecutive scoreless innings to give the Tiger offense an opportunity. During his outing, he set the order down twice and avoided trouble in the seventh after a leadoff double. He finished with 3.2 IP while giving up four runs on five hits.
In the top of the eighth, Iowa scored four two-out runs to increase the margin to 11-2.
“We didn’t shut them down, either,” Johnson said. “You’ve got to credit their hitters; they took good at-bats all day long.”
LSU continued its attempt to rally and made a move in the bottom of the eighth. Pinch hitter Gavin Guidry reached base via a hit-by-pitch, second baseman Gavin Dugas singled through the left side and Brayden Jobert also wore one. The Tigers added two to their total with a single from Crews and a sac fly courtesy of first baseman Jared Jones. LSU trailed 11-4 headed to the ninth.
Iowa hit a home run in the ninth to account for the final margin.