The Nebraska baseball team came out on top 3-2 in a pitchers’ duel against the Iowa Hawkeyes on Sunday to avoid a sweep in the weekend series.
The two teams combined for just nine hits in the game, with five coming from Iowa and four from Nebraska.
Senior starting pitcher Reece Eddins picked up the win for the Huskers and improved his record to 4-2 this season. He pitched seven innings and allowed one run on four hits. He also struck out a pair and walked one.
Three other Husker pitchers, freshmen Colby Gomes and Shay Schanaman and junior Robbie Palkert, combined to pitch the other two innings. Gomes pitched the ninth inning and recorded his eighth save of the season.
Junior pitcher Grant Judkins got the start for Iowa. He threw seven innings and allowed three runs on three hits while striking out four.
Offense was hard to come by in the early parts of the game. Nebraska was set down in order in the top of the first inning. Iowa got a one-out single in the bottom of the first, but the next Hawkeye batter hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
Judkins continued his hot start for Iowa over the next two innings, not allowing a single Husker to reach base. Eddins allowed a total of three baserunners in the second and third innings, but no Hawkeye advanced past second base. The contest headed to the fourth inning deadlocked at zero.
Judkins made it through the Husker lineup the first time perfectly, but his second time through the batting order started drastically different. Freshman infielder Spencer Schwellenbach crushed a home run to left field to open the fourth inning for Nebraska, giving the Huskers a 1-0 lead.
Eddins, now with an insurance run to work with, stayed dialed in and set the Hawkeye batters down in order in the bottom of the fourth inning.
The two pitchers continued to battle back-and-forth and both retired the opposing team’s batters in order in the fifth inning. Both teams got men on base in the sixth inning, but both Judkins and Eddins were able to end the inning without allowing any runs.
The Husker offense broke through in the seventh thanks to a pair of Hawkeye errors. Sophomore outfielder Aaron Palensky reached base and advanced to second on a fielding error. Two batters later, junior outfielder Joe Acker singled to advance Palensky to third.
Junior infielder Luke Roskam then reached on a fielder’s choice, but a throwing error by Iowa allowed both Palensky and Acker to score, extending the Nebraska lead to 3-0.
Iowa’s freshman outfielder Connor McCaffery got one back in the bottom of the seventh inning for the Hawkeyes in the form of a two-out solo home run that brought the score to 3-1.
Gomes singled in the eighth for Nebraska and eventually reached third, but the Huskers could not bring him home to extend the lead.
Iowa climbed even closer in the bottom of the eighth inning. Two walks and a fielder’s choice to start the inning put men on first and second with one out for the Hawkeyes.
Sophomore infielder Izaya Fullard singled to score one for Iowa and make it 3-2. Palkert then replaced Schanaman, who started the eighth inning for the Huskers, and got out of the jam to preserve Nebraska’s lead.
The Huskers were held scoreless in the top of the ninth inning, but Gomes retired the Hawkeyes in order in the bottom of the ninth to get the save and earn Nebraska the 3-2 victory.
Nebraska takes to the field next on Tuesday, April 23, as the Huskers take on Creighton in Omaha. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. The game will air on the CBS Sports Network.