Bullpen implodes as Hawkeyes drop opener at South Florida

Dargan Southard

Iowa City West alum Nick Gallagher was strong in his season debut, but the Hawkeyes bullpen imploded and erased it all.

Gallagher tossed seven-plus scoreless frames, but Iowa surrendered nine runs in the eighth en route to Friday’s 9-4 season-opening loss at South Florida.

The Bulls sent 16 men to the plate in the emphatic eighth, as the Hawkeyes needed three relief pitchers to get three outs. Gallagher yielded six hits and one run with just a single walk and four strikeouts, holding the Bulls without a hit after the third inning.

Iowa held a 4-0 advantage entering the eighth, but Zach Daniels, Josh Martsching and Nick Nelsen combined to surrender seven hits, eight runs and three walks in the bottom half. Martsching failed to record an out.