IOWA CITY, Iowa – The Kansas softball team came up short against Iowa falling 1-0 on Saturday afternoon at Pearl Field. The Jayhawks and Hawkeyes played five scoreless innings before Iowa drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Sophomore Kelsey Kessler had another stellar outing in the circle for Kansas. The 2013 second-team All-Big 12 selection dealt five scoreless innings in the pitchers’ duel. Kessler tossed three hitless innings before giving up the first hit in the fourth inning. She struck out eight batters on the day.
“Kelsey and our defense did extremely well,” said head coach Megan Smith. “She was pretty dominant and our defense made some really great plays behind her.”
KU out hit the Hawkeyes tallying six hits to their four. The Jayhawks threatened early and often. Freshman Lily Behrmann doubled to left centerfield for the first Kansas hit of the game. She was stranded at third base as Iowa got out of the second inning unscathed.
“Offensively, we had a lot of opportunities and we didn’t capitalize,” Smith said. “Overall to see our freshmen go out, play a team of this caliber and do well is good to see. Lily Behrmann and Harli Ridling were very successful.”
In the fourth inning, a pair of walks and a single loaded up the bases for KU. The Hawkeyes responded with a pair of strike outs to retire the side and keeping the game tied, 0-0.
The game remained scoreless until the Hawkeye’s Alyssa Navarro singled to shallow centerfield allowing the go-ahead run to score.
Senior Alex Jones was 2-for-4 at the plate recording a multi-hit game with a pair of singles. Her bunt single in the seventh inning put the tying run on base, but Iowa ended the inning sealing the win.
The Jayhawks have two games left in their fall slate, both at Arrocha Ballpark. KU hosts Baker University on Oct. 17 at 6 p.m. and Highland Community College on Oct. 20 at 1 p.m.