Hill Shuts Down WIU in Opener, Wolverines Drop Nightcap
Evan Hill

March 23, 2013

• Boxscores: Game 1 | Game 2

Site: Adrian, Mich. (Nicolay Field)
Score: Michigan 6, Western Illinois 1; Western Illinois 2, Michigan 1
Records: U-M (10-11), WIU (6-14)
Next U-M Event: Tuesday, March 26 -- vs. Yale (Flushing, N.Y.), Noon

ADRIAN, Mich. -- Freshman Evan Hill (Mt. Pleasant, Mich./Mt. Pleasant) threw a complete-game one-hitter to highlight the University of Michigan baseball team's doubleheader split against Western Illinois Saturday (March 23) at Nicolay Field on the campus of Adrian College. The Wolverines won the opener, 6-1, but fell in the nightcap, 2-1.

Hill struck out seven and gave up just the one hit and a run with two walks in the seven-inning win. He did not allow a hit until the fifth when a Neil DeCook bloop double to left scored a run. Michigan jumped on top early with single runs in the first and second frames. Junior Michael O'Neill (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) singled with one out in the first. He moved to second as freshman Jacob Cronenworth (St. Clair, Mich./St. Clair) was hit by a pitch. Both runners moved up a base on a balk, and O'Neill scored on a run-scoring groundout from sophomore Kyle Jusick (Portage, Mich./Portage Central). In the second, freshman Travis Maezes (Ann Arbor, Mich./Pioneer) singled home sophomore Dylan Delaney (Woodland Hills, Calif./Chaminade) to give the Maize and Blue a 2-0 lead.

The Wolverines broke the game open in the third, scoring four runs. Cronenworth and Jusick singled to lead off the inning. Freshman Jack Sexton (Goldens Bridge, N.Y./Fordham Prep) reached on a dropped fly ball to right, scoring Cronenworth. An infield single from sophomore Zach Zott (Lake Orion, Mich./Lake Orion) brought in Jusick, and junior Cole Martin (Bay City, Mich./John Glenn) laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt that scored senior pinch runner Patrick Biondi (Woodhaven, Mich./Divine Child) and Zott, making it 6-0.

O'Neill had two hits to lead the Wolverine attack in game one, while Martin drove in a pair of runs.

In the nightcap, Michigan had a chance but failed to score in the fourth. With sophomore Dominic Jamett (Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich./University Liggett) on second after a walk and an advancement on a double play, Zott singled to center. The throw from Leatherneck centerfielder Dan Dispensa was in time, and the game remained scoreless. WIU took a 1-0 lead in the fifth on a single, sacrifice bunt that moved the runner to third and a wild pitch. The Leathernecks scored a run in the seventh on a groundout.

Michigan threatened in the ninth. Zott singled with one out. Delaney reached on a bunt single, and both runners moved up a base on a throwing error. Maezes brought in a run with a groundout, but a groundout by O'Neill ended the game.

Cronenworth and Zott had three hits apiece in the nightcap. The loss fell to senior Ben Ballantine (Napa, Calif./Napa), who allowed four hits and a run with five strikeouts in 4.1 innings pitched.

Michigan heads to Flushing, N.Y., and Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, on Tuesday (March 26) for a noon game against Yale.

Contact: Kent Reichert (734) 763-4423

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