Cyclones prepare for Mavericks, lead with pitching

Iowa State freshman Shannon Mortimer throws a pitch during the second inning against UNI on Tuesday, April 16. Guerra and the Cyclones shut out the Panthers, 2-0.

John Miller

The Iowa State Cyclones (27-18, 4-8 Big 12) are set to travel to the University of Nebraska-Omaha to battle the Mavericks (4-36, 2-10 Summit) on Wednesday in a non-conference match up.

Currently sitting at fifth in the Big 12 Conference, the Cyclones are coming off a sweep of the Baylor Bears, where their pitching led them.

Pitchers Emma Hylen, Shannon Mortimer and Savannah Sanders combined to give up a total two runs, one of those being earned, over the three-game series.

Including Mortimer’s two-hit shutout against Northern Iowa on April 16, the Cyclones have given up a total of 14 hits over their four games.

On the other hand, the Mavericks have struggled with pitching over the season as their team ERA (Earned Run Average) is a 6.27 through 251.1 innings over the season. 

In comparison, Iowa State’s pitching staff ERA is 2.98.

The key to the Cyclones’ success on the mound has been the limited amount of walks they have allowed.

Over the season, the Cyclone pitchers have given up 109 base on balls, which is an impressive third lowest in the Big 12 Conference.

Although they are adept at not allowing runners on base via walk, the Cyclones are not known as a strikeout pitching team.

They currently rank last in the conference with a strikeouts per seven innings of 3.98. 

On the flip side of that though, the Cyclones have shown not to be prone to strike out at the plate.

With 185 strikeouts at the plate, they are third in the Big 12.

While the Cyclones have a statistical advantage in about every hitting category over the Mavericks, it will be key to tie runs together in bunches.

In the Cyclones’ last nine games, they have scored a total of 27 runs, which amounts to an average of three runs per game.

That average is slightly lower than their season average of about four runs per game.

That said, the Cyclones could get a big inning going with the power that has been showed at times this season.

With Sami Williams (11 home runs) and Kaylee Bosworth (7 home runs) leading the squad, they certainly have the potential to break out.  

Furthermore, the Cyclones have the fifth-highest batting average and on-base percentage in the Big 12 to help in that respect.

In the last meeting with the Mavericks, the Cyclones prevailed with a 6-5 victory.

With a crucial weekend set against Oklahoma coming up, the Cyclones will hope to pour on some runs and fine-tune the details.

The first pitch is set for 4 p.m.