CHICAGO, Ill. – Western Illinois baseball fell to the Illinois-Chicago Flames 3-2 in an 11-inning contest on Friday night (Mar. 29). The 11-inning game was the first extra innings contest for the Leathernecks this season.
The pitching duel saw a combined 19 strikeouts between the two teams. Western starter John White (1-3) threw 6.2 innings with a career high seven strikeouts and just two earned runs. Aaron Michel (1-1) struck out a career high four batters in a career best 3.2 innings of relief work.
Illinois-Chicago starter Tomas Michelson (3-2) threw eight innings with seven strikeouts and two runs. Reliever Jack Anderson (2-5) came in and got the win for the Flames, throwing three innings with no runs allowed.
The Flames Alex Grunenwald scored the first two runs of the game for Illinois-Chicago. Grunenwald doubled and crossed the plate in both the second and sixth innings to give UIC a 2-0 advantage.
Western used timely hitting and capitalized on a UIC error to tie the game at 2-2 in the eighth inning. Brent Turner singled after Tanner Glore reached on an error to put two runners on. Glore scored after Manny Reyes singled, while Turner crossed the plate after a JP Maestas RBI ground out.
Neither team scored in the ninth, which sent the game into extra innings. The Flames won the game in the 11th after Ryan Boss hit a walk-off home run.
The Leathernecks got multiple hits in the game from Turner, Reyes and Travis Stafford. Each player had two hits in the contest, respectfully.
Western and Illinois-Chicago will meet again tomorrow afternoon (Mar. 30) in game two of the three-game set. First pitch is set for 12:05 p.m., with Tom Constand slated to get the start for the Leathernecks.