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Iowa State Daily

Iowa State’s bats falter again, Cyclones drop doubleheader to No. 1 Texas

Elizabeth Lane
McKenna Andrews gets ready to run the bases during the Iowa State vs. UNI softball game at Cyclones Sports Complex, April 2, 2024.

After dropping a 5-2 game to No. 1 Texas on Friday, Iowa State looked to potentially steal a game away in its doubleheader clash with the Longhorns on Saturday.

But just like Friday, the Cyclones struggled to get runs across the plate while struggling to keep the Texas offense in check. Iowa State dropped its last series in Austin, Texas, with 8-0 and 9-1 losses, both in five innings.

Longhorn pitching dominates struggling Cyclone offense

Despite getting two scores in its three-run loss to Texas Friday night, Iowa State struggled to find ways to get past the Longhorns’ dominating pitchers who allowed one total run to the Cyclones in 10 innings.

In the first game, Texas sent out its ace in Citlaly Gutierrez who is top three in the Big 12 in ERA (1.54) and has not accounted for a single loss with a perfect 8-0 record.

That record was extended to 9-0 following a two-hit, two-walk, five-inning shutout against Iowa State in the Longhorns’ first win of the doubleheader Saturday.

Following Gutierrez’s stellar performance in the first game, Texas sent out Mac Morgan to potentially sweep the Cyclones.

Morgan had previously seen action in this series Friday night, coming in for relief of Teagan Kavan to close out the seventh inning. In that inning, Morgan did not allow a hit while walking one batter and striking out two batters.

But in the second appearance of the series, Morgan went all five innings, giving up one run on seven hits and striking out two batters.

The one run that Iowa State strung together was in the top of the fifth inning, where Cyclone center fielder Milaysia Ochoa hit an infield single to score catcher Maddie Knowles from third base.

Despite having a seven-hit day in the final game of the doubleheader, Iowa State’s offense failed to acquire enough runs to best the Longhorns’ strong pitching that led to the series sweep.

Texas’ Reese Atwood’s two-homer day highlights explosive offense

While the Texas pitching dominated the Cyclone offense, the Longhorns’ offense once again showed why they are one of the best hitting teams in the nation with not one, but two mercy rules to seal their sweep.

Texas took advantage of the struggling Cyclone pitching staff, putting up 17 runs on 23 hits and seven walks while only striking out four times over the course of the two shortened games.

One of the major reasons that the Longhorns found success in the doubleheader Saturday came from Atwood’s two home run performances.

Atwood had a perfect day at the plate Saturday, picking up a hit in all four at-bats while drawing two walks on the day.

Along with Atwood, multiple Texas batters found success that led to the Longhorns’ big day Saturday. Right fielder Ashton Maloney and third basemen Mia Scott also contributed with four hits of their own in both games.

Iowa State suffers fourth series sweep

Going into the three game series against the Longhorns, things had looked up after a satisfying 12-7 win over St. Thomas at home.

But for the Cyclones, the momentum from their home win did not translate into their two-day stay in Austin, Texas, as they dropped another series to a conference opponent.

With its loss in the final game of the doubleheader Saturday, Iowa State suffered its fourth conference sweep this season, and second consecutive sweep after losing all three games in Provo, Utah, to BYU.

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