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Maryland baseball: Terps drop B1G opener 8-1 to Iowa

Maryland opened its B1G season at Iowa by being downed by the Hawkeyes 8-1. Joel Booker's home run helped Iowa put up a four spot in the second, which was more than enough for C. J. Eldred to keep the Terps at bay.

The Terps didn't fare very well in their B1G opener, falling 8-1 to Iowa. The Hawkeye's C. J. Eldred threw a complete game six-hitters, helped out by three double plays. Mike Shawaryn had one bad inning, but that was enough to propel Iowa to the victory. Joel Booker's two-run homer was the inning's big blow.

Iowa bangs out a three-run lead

The Terps wasted no time getting on the board. In the top of the first, Madison Nickens singled and went to second on a ground out. Nick Cieri brought him home with a single through the right side.

Iowa did some damage of their own in the bottom of the second, mostly with the bottom of their order, and all with two gone. Mason McCoy hit a ground rule double. After a HBP, Robert Neustrom tripled to left field to put the Hawkeyes on top 2-1. Joel Booker homered and just like that the Terps trailed by three runs.

The Terps had opportunities to score in the second, third, and fifth innings, but fell victim to inning-ending double plays.

Hawkeyes extend their lead

Shawaryn settled down and through four innings had struck out seven Hawkeyes. He easily retired the first two Hawkeyes in the bottom of the fifth before running into trouble once more. Tyler Peyton singled and Austin Guzzo was HBP. Gary Frankos then singled to put the Hawkeyes on top 5-1.

Andrew Green relieved Shawaryn to begin the bottom of the sixth. Shawaryn's line: 5ip, 5r, 5er, 8h, 1bb, 8k. In the bottom of the seventh Iowa stretched their lead. Peyton and Guzzo hit back-to-back doubles. Frankos bunted his way aboard, as did McCoy to make the score 7-1. Zach Guth relieved Green and did an excellent job in preventing further damage.

John Murphy pitched the eighth. Iowa scored an unearned run on an error and a two-out double.

Eldred was still on the mound for the Hawkeyes in the ninth, and except for a single by Kevin Biondic, he struck out the side for a complete game victory.

With the loss Maryland has fallen below .500 overall (10-11) and are 0-1 in B1G play. Shawaryn's record is now 2-2 on the year.

Three things to know:

1. Mike Shawaryn has had some difficulties this season. It's not just his earned run average; the number of wild pitches and hit batsmen is very uncharacteristic for a pitcher whose location is usually spot on. Shawaryn is a competitor and whatever has been the problem, he and pitching Coach Jim Bellanger will straighten it out.

2. Anthony Papio is in a protracted slump. Papio historically has been a streaky hitter, and when he gets hot, his bat can be extremely dangerous. But this year has been tough so far for the senior. The good news is that a few hits here and there might be enough for Papio to go on a tear.

3. Double plays are wiping out Maryland scoring opportunities. The Terps entered Friday tied with Purdue for last in the B1G in hitting into double plays. Maryland hit into three more today. Perhaps the Terps can start to send runners to stay out of double plays.