Illini split with Northwestern

Joe Bonadonna’s always in a hurry

Illinois split a doubleheader with Northwestern Saturday losing a squeaker 4-3 then in the second game, crushing the Wildcats 11-5 behind a pair of career-first homers by Kyle Hudson and John Schlichter.

The kids and I got to the park just as fans were spilling of the stands after the first game.  I asked people on the sidewalk what the outcome was and was informed that we lost.  I asked some more people but unfortunately they said the same thing.

We got into the park and I saw Mike Sterk’s mom, Joyce aka “The StatLady”.  I call her that because she keeps a mean scorecard.  Detailed down to the backwards “K” for strikeout looking.  Even I don’t that.

Anyway, I said I heard we lost and wondered what happened.  “Well, Mike gave up a homerun”, she said.

Oops.

She was really nice though and showed me the scorecard for the game and as tempting as it might be, one person can’t always be responsible for a loss just as they aren’t always be responsible for a win.

Hudson swiping #35 of the year

Game Two went a whole lot better.  Illinois had two homers from Kyle Hudson and John Schlichter.  Amazingly, they were career firsts for both players.  Schlichter was 2 for 3 with 4 rbis and Hudson was 3 for 4 with 3 rbis and 2 runs and a stolen base.

Schlichter hit his first career homer in the second game

Schlichter’s homer was part of a 5 run rally in the 5th inning which pretty much put the game out of reach at 9-2, though the Wildcats did plate three more runs.

QB Starter Phil Haig was on the mound for the Illini in game two and pitched his best game yet.  He lasted 6 innings and gave up a run.

I ran into Ryan Hastings’ father Brian and mentioned the nice two-page feature article the News-Gazette did on Ryan.  I asked how Ryan was doing.  Brian says he thinks Ryan has had a solid season but he’s waiting for him to break out into a hot streak.  I told him that a hot streak against Ohio State or Purdue would be perfect.

One last thing, kudos to my 8-year old daughter Olivia who has come with me to the last 5 home games (‘cepting game one today).  She’s a real trooper and is now beginning to learn the players’ names and such by reading the baseball cards they hand out.  Oh, Joe Bonadonna, you have a new number one fan now.  She digs your at bat music.

I’ll be out of town Monday so I’ll unfortunately miss the last Illinois-Northwestern game.  Cheer extra hard for me!

More photos (a lot more) here.

Go Illini!

One more thing… if you haven’t already,  vote for Ryan Hastings for the Lowe’s Senior Class Award.

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