Baseball Toppled By No. 23 Hilltoppers, 11-5

Steve McGuiggan went 3-for-4 with an RBI.
Steve McGuiggan went 3-for-4 with an RBI.

March 6, 2010

Box Score

BOWLING GREEN, Ky.- Western Kentucky's six-run second inning proved to be the difference in the UIC baseball team's 11-5 loss to the 23rd-ranked Hilltoppers at Nick Denes Field on Saturday.

Steve McGuiggan went 3-for-4 with an RBI and Chris Rutta homered for the second straight game for the Flames (1-8).

Matt Payton drove in five runs, including two on a triple during the decisive second, and came up a single short of the cycle for Western Kentucky (8-2).

McGuiggan led off the game by legging out a triple after sending the second pitch he saw from starter Tanner Perkins into the gap in right center. He scored when the next batter, Jason Ganek, hit a deep fly ball to center that was caught for a sacrifice fly to put UIC up early.

Western Kentucky evened the game in the next half-inning when Payton hit a solo shot off of starter Rafael Garcia. The Hilltoppers then put up a six-spot in the second, as five of the first six batters of that frame reached safely and four extra-base hits brought in five of the hosts' six runs.

UIC would not go away, scoring a run in the third on Ryan Meehan's RBI double, tacking on a run in the fifth when Rutta went yard, and putting two on the scoreboard in the sixth courtesy of back-to-back RBI from McGuiggan and Ganek. But a pair of two-run innings following the six-run second gave Western Kentucky enough breathing room the rest of the way.

Brad Riegler provided 4.2 innings of scoreless, no-hit relief for the Flames.

UIC concludes its three-game series against the nationally-ranked Hilltoppers this Sunday at 1 p.m.

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