How 'bout those Hawkeyes?Iowa City, IA - The Iowa Hawkeyes are headed to Springfield, MO for the NCAA Regional baseball play, as a number two seed. The Hawkeyes will open on Friday, in the second season, under Iowa's new baseball coach.
Iowa Hawkeyes (39-16)
NCAA tourneys: 4 (last one in 1990)
CWS appearances: 1 (1972)
Region: Springfield, MO
Opponents: 1. Missouri State; 3. Oregon; 4. Canisus
NCAA opener: 2 p.m. ET Friday vs. Oregon
Factoid: The Hawkeyes are in the NCAA tourney for the first time since 1990.
Twitter: @UIBaseball - Source: Big Ten Network
The Hawkeyes will face third-seeded Oregon at 1 p.m. (CT) at Hammons Field. Missouri State is the top-seeded team in the regional and the No. 8 national seed. The Bears will face No. 4 seed Canisius -- the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference champion -- at 6 p.m.
Iowa is making its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1990 and the fourth regional appearance in school history. The Hawkeyes boast a No. 29 RPI and finished runner-up in the Big Ten with a 19-5 record. Iowa is 39-16 overall -- the most wins for the program since 1985.
|Iowa head coach Rick Heller is taking the Hawkeyes to his |
first NCAA Tournament, in his second season at the helm.
Oregon used a late season surge to earn an at-large berth, as the Ducks won their final five series in Pac-12 play and nine of their last 10 games overall. Oregon closed out the regular season with a key series win, taking 2-of-3 games at home against Pac-12 champion UCLA -- the top overall national seed.
Sophomore Cole Irvin is the Ducks' Friday night starter, going 2-4 with a 4.01 ERA in 74 innings. The southpaw has allowed 40 runs (33 earned) on 73 hits and has 42 strikeouts to 22 walks.
Offensively, Oregon has a .254 team batting average with just one player hitting above .300. Mitchell Tolman leads the team with a .329 average with team-highs in hits (72), runs (42), and RBIs (40). He is slugging .475 and reaching base at a .462 clip.