May 17, 2013
Site: Lincoln, Neb. (Haymarket Park)
Score: Nebraska 9, Michigan 6
Records: U-M (28-25, 13-10 Big Ten), NEB (25-27, 15-8 Big Ten)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, May 18 -- at Nebraska (Lincoln, Neb.), Noon CDT (TV: Big Ten Network)
LINCOLN, Neb. -- The University of Michigan baseball team fell, 9-6, at Nebraska Friday night (May 17) in front of 5,503 fans at Haymarket Park. Michigan took a 2-0 lead early, but Nebraska scored nine straight, including a five-run second inning.
With one game remaining in the regular season, Michigan is in sixth place with a 13-10 conference record. U-M clinches a Big Ten Tournament berth with either a win on Saturday against Nebraska or a Michigan State loss at Penn State. U-M can get as high as the fifth seed in the tournament with a win and a Minnesota loss to Illinois.
The Wolverines used small ball to score two runs in the top of the second. Freshman Jacob Cronenworth (St. Clair, Mich./St. Clair) and sophomore Zach Zott (Lake Orion, Mich./Lake Orion) had back-to-back singles to lead off the frame. Both runners stole a base and Cronenworth scored on a Nebraska throwing error. Sophomore Kyle Jusick (Portage, Mich./Portage Central) then laid down a suicide squeeze bunt, which scored Zott. Nebraska answered with five runs in the bottom of the second, highlighted by two run-scoring bunts and a three-run home run from Pat Kelly.
The Cornhuskers scored a pair of runs in the fourth inning on Michael Pritchard's sacrifice fly and Chad Christensen's RBI single. Nebraska added two in the sixth on RBI singles from Kash Kalkowski and Tanner Lubach.
Michigan put up a four-spot in the top of the eighth frame. Junior Cole Martin (Bay City, Mich./John Glenn) reached on an infield single to start the inning. After senior/junior John DiLaura (Clinton Twp., Mich./Warren DeLa Salle) was hit by a pitch and senior Patrick Biondi (Woodhaven, Mich./Divine Child) walked, junior Michael O'Neill (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) belted a grand slam to the sidewalk out in leftfield. It was his fifth home run of the season and fourth in the last five games.
Biondi and Martin had two hits apiece, while O'Neill drove in a season-high four runs. Freshman Evan Hill (Mt. Pleasant, Mich./Mt. Pleasant) was tagged with the loss, allowing nine hits and six earned runs with three strikeouts in three-plus innings. Freshman Alex Daar (Clinton Twp., Mich./University Liggett) struck out two in two scoreless innings of relief.
The Wolverines and Cornhuskers conclude the 2013 regular season on Saturday afternoon (May 18) at noon CDT. The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network.
Contact: Kent Reichert (734) 763-4423