Baseball Drops Series Opener Against #2 Vanderbilt, 9-0

Sophomore right-hander Tomas Michelson
Sophomore right-hander Tomas Michelson

March 1, 2013

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The UIC baseball team (3-4) held #2 Vanderbilt (10-1) scoreless for the first four innings of Friday night's series opener, but the Commodores exploded for nine runs in the following four frames to defeat the Flames, 9-0, at Hawkins Field.  Sophomore pitcher Tomas Michelson lasted 5.1 innings, allowing five hits and three earned runs.  Vanderbilt's winning hurler, Kevin Ziomek, tossed an impressive complete game one-hit shutout, fanning 15 UIC batters and walking just three.

“I thought the score was not at all indicative of the game,” said head coach Mike Dee.  “The first five innings was great baseball and then we gave in to the competition.  We played too defensively today and you can’t do that against a great ball club.”

Redshirt senior Alex Grunenwald tallied the Flames' lone hit in the top of the second inning with a single to left field to start the frame.  He was pushed over to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Joe Betcher and eventually joined on base by redshirt sophomore Zenon Kolakowski who was walked.  The two base runners were left stranded however as the Flames squandered a chance to take an early lead.

Grunenwald was recently named the Horizon League's Batter of the Week for his efforts against Santa Clara last weekend.  Grunenwald belted three homers, posted seven RBI and totaled a three-game average of .357 with a slugging percentage of 1.071.

Saturday's game is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. CT with freshman Jack Andersen set to take the mound for UIC.