April 26, 2024123456789RHE
UIC Flames0011320108100
Win: SCHUELER (4-1) 7.164417
Loss: Krier (1-5) 4.245443
Husmann (VALPO) 412201
Ryan (VALPO) 412101
COLON (UIC) 412100
Unlucky Bounce Costs Beacons in Series Opener at UIC
Friday, April 26, 2024
Unlucky Bounce Costs Beacons in Series Opener at UIC
Alex Ryan has homered seven times this season. After all seven, he's received a high five from third base coach Jeff Mayes.

The Valparaiso University baseball team got home runs from Carson Husmann (Hanna, Ind. / South Central [Bradley]) and Alex Ryan, (Lake Mills, Wis. / Lakeside Lutheran) but host UIC prevailed 8-6 at Curtis Granderson Stadium in Chicago on a rainy Friday afternoon. An unlucky bounce changed the complexion of the game as Valpo would have tied the game at seven on a double by Husmann in the eighth, but the ball hopped over the wall for a ground-rule double and the runner from first was forced to hold at third, where he was eventually stranded.

How It Happened

  • The scoring began in the top of the second, when Husmann drilled a skyscraper of a home run to left to put the guests ahead 1-0.
  • Valpo starting pitcher Kaleb Krier (Altoona, Iowa / Southeast Polk [DMACC]) did not yield a run over the first two frames, including a perfect second. The Flames capitalized on a pair of walks in the third, producing a run on a sacrifice fly, but Krier prevented further damage as UIC stranded two in scoring position.
  • UIC’s AJ Taylor tripled high off the left-field fence to lead off the bottom of the fourth. He crossed the dish on a ground ball to short to give the Flames their first lead of the afternoon at 2-1.
  • UIC scored three times in the fifth with help from two walks, three stolen bases, a wild pitch and an error including a stolen base, wild pitch and error all on the same play, scoring two runs.
  • Valpo got one back in the top of the sixth when Brady Renfro (Antigo, Wis. / Antigo) lifted a sacrifice fly to help take advantage of a frame that started with consecutive singles. That shrunk the lead to three at 5-2.
  • UIC tacked on two in the seventh to extend the gap to 7-2.
  • Valpo trimmed the deficit to four when Ryan belted a 392-foot blast to left to cut the lead to 7-3 in the seventh.
  • After Grant Jablonski (Mishawaka, Ind. / Mishawaka) worked a scoreless bottom of the seventh, Valpo put together a surge in the top of the eighth. A string of three straight singles including a two-run knock yanked into right by Ryan Maka (Oak Forest, Ill. / Oak Forest) chased the UIC bullpen man from the game.
  • Husmann greeted the new pitcher with a drive that one-hopped over the centerfield fence, plating the third run of the inning to make it 7-6. However, the bounce proved to be an unlucky one, as Maka was forced to stop at third although he would have scored the tying run if the ball had stayed in play. UIC got out of the inning with a strikeout as Valpo stranded men at second and third.
  • An insurance run scored in the bottom of the eighth and UIC held on for the win.

Inside the Game

  • Husmann’s home run was his seventh of the season and the 30th of his collegiate career.
  • Ryan’s round tripper was his seventh this season and the 10th of his career.
  • Ryan and Husmann each had multi-hit games.
  • This was Valpo’s 15th game this season decided by two runs or fewer. Valpo is 4-11 in those close contests.
  • Valpo owned an 11-10 edge in the hit column. The Beacons suffered their fourth loss when outhitting the opponent this year, falling to 8-4 in those games.

Up Next

Valpo (12-27, 4-12 MVC) will continue the three-game series in the Windy City on Saturday at 2 p.m. The game will air on ESPN+.