By the numbers: Hawkeye softball’s hot start

Whether it's on the mound or at the plate, Iowa's statistics show it has all the bases covered.


Jenna Galligan

Iowa pitcher Lauren Shaw throws a pitch during an Iowa softball game against Iowa Central at Pearl Field on Friday, October 4, 2019. The Hawkeyes defeated the Tritons 4-0 in 10 innings.

Isaac Goffin, Sports Reporter

Last season, the Iowa softball team finished the season with a 19-32 record.

Though it’s early, this season is already looking much better for the 12-2 Hawkeyes. In a game known for its numbers, it is worth recognizing where the team is shining early on and what has made the Hawkeyes successful so far.

2.14 – Team ERA

On the mound, senior Allison Doocy and junior Lauren Shaw have dominated.

Shaw has a 1.46 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 48 innings. With a 7-1 record, she has managed five complete games and two shutouts. In the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, Shaw threw two complete games and gave up no earned runs.

Against Boston College Feb. 15, she gave up three hits and struck out eight while throwing 88 pitches on the day. The next day versus Georgia Tech, she had 10 strikeouts. For her performance, Shaw was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week.

Predictably, Doocy is taking care of business. The 2019 Big Ten All-Second Team member has built off that success this season, posting a 1.76 ERA. She boasts a 5-1 record and has completed four games with one shutout.

Feb. 23, the pair worked together to help the Hawkeyes win against Missouri-Kansas City in Hawaii. Shaw started and went 5.1 innings and gave up two earned runs. Doocy relieved her for the final 1.2 innings and surrendered no runs while striking out four.

100 – Team hits

Pitching is great, but a team can’t win unless they get on base and score. Hitting certainly helps with that, and the Hawkeyes have proven so.

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Five players have more than 10 hits so far. Freshman infielder Nia Carter leads the team with 17 hits, which includes two doubles and six RBIs. She leads the Big Ten in batting average with a .567 mark. For her 10-of-14 performance at the plate this past weekend during the Hawaii Invitational, she was named Big Ten Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week.

Another freshman who has shined is infielder Kalena Burns. She has 14 hits, tied for second on the team. But she leads the team in home runs with three and RBIs with 10.

Though not freshman, two players that are doing well at the plate but are in their first season as a Hawkeye are sophomore catcher Kit Rocco and junior infielder Mia Ruther. These two are the other players tied with Burns at 14 hits. Rocco has two doubles and nine RBIs, and Ruther has one double and two RBIs.

3 – States the team has played in

With the weather in Iowa still stuck in the winter, the Hawkeyes have become snowbirds. They’ve played in South Carolina, Georgia, and Hawaii.

In the Kickin’ Chicken Classic in Conway, South Carolina, every team that the Hawkeyes went up against was from the South. That did not phase them, as they went 4-1 with wins over East Carolina, Campbell, Coastal Carolina, and Virginia Tech. In their final game against Virginia Tech, Ruther hit a walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth inning.

The Hawkeyes went down to Georgia Tech for their second series, sweeping Boston College and splitting against the Yellow Jackets.

In the Hawaii Invitational last weekend, the Hawkeyes faced no Power Five teams and proved that they were the best team at the event. The Hawkeyes went 5-0 with victories over Portland State, Missouri-Kansas City, and Hawaii.

The Hawkeyes will make three consecutive trips to Florida before playing their first home game March 19 against Maryland.

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