Iowa State comes out on top at Cyclone Indoor Invitational

Zach Gourley

The ISU softball team outscored their opponents by a combined score of 62-18 in their first six games of the 2011 season.

The Cyclone Indoor Invitational saw Iowa State win their first five games, only to falter in the finale. The Cyclones were dominant early on in the weekend, starting with a 7-0 victory over Creighton on Friday. Pitcher Rachel Zabriskie tied the ISU all-time record for strikeouts in a game with 13 against the Bluejays. Zabriskie allowed just one hit while pitching all seven innings.

“It was wonderful to come out that way,” Zabriskie said. “Everybody wants to come out and start really strong.”

Tori Torrescano led the charge for the Cyclones against Creighton, going 3 for 4 at the plate with 3 RBIs and a home run.

The Cyclones followed that performance with a 17-0 drubbing of the Western Illinois Leathernecks. This time, Torrescano was a force on the mound as well as at the plate. As a pitcher, Torrescano gave up just three hits in five innings of work. She also had another three RBI game, going 2 for 3 as a hitter and getting walked once.

The Cyclones faced Western Illinois again on Saturday, as freshman Breeanna Holliday made her first career start at pitcher for the Cyclones. Holliday pitched the entire game, allowing one run on six hits in a 9-1 victory. 

“She threw very well for a freshman,” coach Stacy Gemeinhardt-Cesler said of Holliday’s performance. “She got herself out of some jams, which is really what we want to see.”

In Saturday’s final game, the Cyclones were matched up with the South Dakota State Jackrabbits.

The Cyclones trotted out their fourth different pitcher in four games, with the same result. Lauren Kennewell took the mound for Iowa State in a 16-2 win as Cyclone hitters continued to over-power opposing pitchers.

Center fielder Heidi Kidwell was perfect at the plate with four hits, three RBIs and three runs scored. 

“You never expect to hit this well. We’re averaging over .400 as a team,” Gemeinhardt-Cesler said. “I’m very proud of them.

On the final day of the Invitational, the Cyclones had a double-header with the Valparaiso Crusaders.

Gemeinhardt-Celser called on her ace Zabriskie to pitch the first game, as the Cyclones won 11-4. Zabriskie was on top of her game again, as she struck out 11 Crusader batters.

The Cyclones struggled to get anything going offensively in the second game against Valpo as the Crusaders jumped out to an early lead. Torrescano lasted only two innings on the mound, giving up six runs. The Crusaders cruised to an 11-2 victory.

Iowa State finished the weekend going 5-1 in the Invitational. The Cyclones’ next matchup is against Texas State on Friday in San Marcos, Texas.