Iowa State head coach ejected in win over Drake


Tyler Coe

Tatum Johnson fouls off a pitch against Drake on May 3, 2023.

Anthony Hanson, Sports Reporter

AMES – Iowa State associated head coach Courtney Martinez led Iowa State to a 12-4 win over in-state rival Drake Wednesday at the Cyclone Sports Complex.

The hitting and infield coach for the Cyclones took over early in the first inning after Iowa State head coach Jamie Pinkerton was ejected for arguing a call at home plate. An Iowa State double play was overturned by a replay review, allowing Drake’s third run to score. Pinkerton left the Iowa State dugout to argue but was ejected from the game. It was his first ejection as the head coach of the Cyclones. 

Martinez coached the Cyclones the rest of the way and finished ahead of Drake 12-4. The Iowa State win over the in-state opponent came after Drake won the first two games between the two teams earlier this season. 

“I think everyone did what they needed to do in their roles at the right time,” Martinez said. “It was nice to see that, especially at this time of year.”

Iowa State improved to a 22-28 record on the season. 

The Cyclones responded in the bottom of the first with two runs, then held Drake scoreless for the rest of the game. The Iowa State offense continued to click up and down the lineup. Tatum Johnson started in the ninth spot for Iowa State, and her two RBI triple gave her team the go-ahead runs.

The Cyclones led 4-3 after the Johnson triple in her first at-bat, and Iowa State extended its lead with three more runs in the fourth. In the fourth, Iowa State center fielder Milaysia Ochoa launched her 12th home run of the season. The two-run shot put Iowa State up 8-4.

Just before, Ochoa saved runs for the Iowa State defense with a defensive play in center field. Ochoa made a diving catch with Drake’s Haylee Lehman on base to get the second out for Iowa State.

Ochoa added insurance runs for Iowa State with her single to score two in the sixth inning. A Cyclone playing in her final game at Cyclone Sports Complex propelled her team over the eight-run mercy rule.

Angelita Fuentes homered and brought Ochoa in to score to make the score 12-4. Fuentes launched her first career home run over the fence in left-center field. Fuentes came to the plate to pinch hit for left fielder Lea Nelson. 

“That’s tough to do,” Pinkerton said about Fuentes’ home run. “To come off the bench after sitting all game and still have a productive AB. I was really happy about that.”

At the top of the order, Ochoa totaled five RBIs. She continued her stellar late-season offense.

The junior leads the Cyclones with a .322 batting average. She reached base three times and scored three runs.

In the nine-hole for Iowa State, the starting pitcher and designated hitter Johnson produced two extra base hits. Johnson’s stint on the mound was short, but the freshman stayed in the designated hitter spot and batted the rest of the game for her team.

She allowed three hits and three runs and did not record an out in her time in the circle. On the offensive end, Johnson ended with a triple and a double.

Iowa State catcher Mikayla Ramos homered in the first inning to drive in Iowa State’s first two runs. In the sixth, Ramos added another RBI after a groundout. Cyclones also got contributions from the middle of their order.

Alesia Ranches finished with two hits and Kasey Simpson had an RBI bunt in the fourth inning.

Iowa State will next face Kansas for the final series of the season. The Cyclones and Jayhawks will both be competing for position in the Big 12 conference standings.