Baseball Holds On For 9-8 Victory Over Bradley|
April 7, 2004
Peoria, Ill. - The University of Illinois at Chicago baseball team may have stranded a season-high 16 runners on base against Bradley on Wednesday afternoon.
But the Flames got the hit when they needed it, as senior third baseman Nelson Gord roped a RBI single in the top of the eighth inning, giving UIC a crucial insurance run and the 9-8 non-conference victory over the Braves at O'Brien Field on Wednesday afternoon.
Gord finished tied a career-high with three hits and had two RBI and two runs scored.
With the victory, UIC improves to 16-9 overall, while the Braves drop to 15-7-1 on the campaign.
The run proved to be critical, as Bradley catcher Dan Puente connected for his second solo homer of the afternoon, in the bottom half of the frame to cut the UIC lead to 9-8.
The Flames also received a solid performance from sophomore left-fielder Ted Rosinski, who tied a career-high with three base knocks.
Senior right fielder Mike Hughes went 1-for-4 with four RBI, including a three-run homer in the bottom half of the second inning. That homer marked his eighth of the season, tying a career-high set in 2003.
The Flames were also able to take advantage of three Bradley errors in the first three innings that led to eight unearned runs.
Junior reliever Charlie Hahn (2-2) picked up the victory for the Flames, allowing one run and four hits in 2.2 innings of work. Freshman Ryan Zink came in the bottom of the ninth inning and collected his third save of the season.
UIC touched Bradley starter Michael Christl (2-2) for three runs in the top of the first inning with the benefit of only one hit in the frame. The Flames received RBI from catcher Justin Johnson (fielders choice) and Mike Hughes (sacrifice fly) and scored their final run on a Christl wild pitch.
The Braves answered with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the first when first baseman Brad Canada connected for a two-run double off of UIC starter Eric Carlson, narrowing the Flames' advantage to 3-2.
UIC was able to maximize its hits again in the top of the second inning as four Flames crossed home plate by virtue of only two hits, highlighted by Hughes' three-run homer, extending their lead to 7-2.
The scoring frenzy continued in the bottom half of the second, as Bradley leadoff hitter Rene Aqueron took Carlson deep for a solo homer, cutting UIC's lead to 7-3.
The Flames did some two-out scoring in the top of the third inning, when Gord plated Mike Bruszer from third base with a RBI single up the middle, giving UIC the 8-3 lead.
Bradley, however, would not go away quietly as they torched freshman reliever Zach Peterson for three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, with RBI from Ryan Curry (double), Canada (double), Dan Puente (single) cutting the Flames lead to 8-6.
Puente struck again in the bottom of the sixth inning as he took an offering from Hahn over the right field wall for a solo-homer, drawing the Braves to within one run of the Flames at 8-7.
UIC will be back in action on Friday evening, as they will host Wright State at 7:05 p.m. in their Horizon League opener at Les Miller Field.