April 20, 2023 at 11:05 a.m.
Panthers can't overcome early deficit against Redbirds
The Iowa-Grant baseball team hosted Darlington Friday in a SWAL contest and took their first conference loss.
Lefty Brach Holman received the starting nod from head coach Kyle Riemenapp.
The Panthers struggled in the field early on, as Darlington had the bases loaded with no outs after an error, hit batter and a single.
Darlington's Raegan Jackson would then drive in a run after hitting into a fielder's choice.
Gage Banfield went on to hit an RBI single to right field, giving the Redbirds a quick 2-0 lead.
It would then be a three-run lead when Barrett Vieth hit a sacrifice fly to center fielder Cyle Steffl.
Darlington was threatening again in the top of the third inning.
Three consecutive singles loaded the bases with no outs.
Vieth attempted to lay down a bunt to drive in a run, but infielder Maddox Fisher threw a runner out at third to prevent the score.
Two pitches later, Darlington's Riggs Black hit a fly ball that was caught by Iowa-Grant's Gavin Hinderman, who threw the ball home, as Jackson advanced; the tag was laid down in time, and the Panthers had a double play to end the inning.
Both sides settled in defensively, but offense was scarce.
Darlington held a 3-0 lead until the top of the fifth, as an Iowa-Grant error led to a run for the Redbirds.
Iowa-Grant got on the board in the bottom of the fifth.
Dawson Reid drew a walk to start, then Ashton Schmitz doubled to deep left field to put two runners in scoring position with no outs.
Everett Zimmer delivered with a base hit, bringing the score to 4-1.
The Panthers added another score to make it a 4-2 game.
Cyle Steffl relieved Holman in the fourth and lasted two innings.
Will Fulton relieved Steffl in the sixth and got out of a jam.
Fulton walked the leadoff man but responded with a strikeout and got a ground out.
After a second walk and a base hit, the bases were full with two outs.
Fulton picked up a big strikeout to leave the bases loaded and prevented a score.
Iowa-Grant wasn't able to capitalize on a Darlington error in the bottom of the sixth, as two runners were left on base.
The Panthers were down to their last three outs in the bottom of the seventh.
After a ground out, Iowa-Grant put the tying run in the batter's box after Fisher drew a walk to get on base.
Holman would then swing at the first pitch and singled on a line drive to right field.
With the tying run at first base, the Panthers were turned away abruptly when Fulton hit a line drive that was caught, then Fisher was out scrambling back to second, as the game ended, resulting in a 4-2 loss for Iowa-Grant.
The Panthers had just four hits on the day and had three errors.
Darlington had seven hits and two errors.
Iowa-Grant took their first loss in the SWAL, as they fell to 5-3 overall and 3-1 in conference play.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
DTN 3 0 0 0 1 0 0 4 7 2
I-G 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 2 4 3
Banfield (W) 6 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 9 K, 4 BB
B. Goebel (SV) 1 IP, H, BB
Ta.Crist (LF) 0/4, R
M. Goebel (CF) 0/2, R, BB, HBP
B. Goebel (SS/P) 3/4, R
Jackson (3B/SS) 1/4, RBI
Banfield (P/3B) 2/3, RBI, R, BB
Vieth (1B) 0/3, RBI, BB
Black (2B) 1/4, 2B
Dempsy-Strang (C) 0/1, 2 BB
Ty. Crist (C) 0/0, BB
Ackley (RF) 0/3
Holman (L) 2 IP, ER, 5 H, K, BB
Steffl 3 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, K, 4 BB
Fulton 2 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 2 K, BB
Zimmer (LF) 2/3, RBI
Fisher (3B) 0/3, BB
Holman (P/C) 1/4
Fulton (C/CF) 0/4
Popple (1B) 0/2, BB
Cartwright (RF) 0/2, BB
Hinderman (2B) 0/3
Pettit (DH) 0/1
Reid (DH) 0/0, 2 BB, R
Schmitz (SS) 1/3, R, 2B