Illinois Tops Nebraska, Wins Outright Big Ten Baseball Title

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CHAMPAIGN -- With a 6-3 victory over Nebraska on Thursday night, the Illinois baseball team won the outright Big Ten Championship and clinched the top seed in next week's Big Ten Tournament. The Fighting Illini secure their 30th conference title and first since 2011.

Ranked among the top five in all major national polls, Illinois holds a 20-1 Big Ten record and is 44-6-1 overall. The Illini are riding the nation's longest win streak this season with 25 consecutive victories heading into their final pair of conference games this weekend against the Huskers.

The Illini had an offensive team effort as eight players recorded a hit. Illinois scored first with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning as Adam Walton scored on a Ryan Nagle RBI-single to left center, and Nagle was later batted in by a Jason Goldstein sac fly. The Illini extended their lead to 4-0 in the bottom of the fourth inning on a Pat McInerney two-run home run. Illinois added a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth before the Huskers got on the board with three runs in the top of the seventh. Kevin Duchene earned the win, striking out four in 7.0 innings, while Tyler Jay held the final six batters without a hit, striking out three.

The 2015 Big Ten Baseball Tournament will be held May 20-24 at Target Field in Minneapolis with coverage from BTN. The Illini open tournament play on Wednesday, taking on the No. 8 seed at 6 p.m. ET. Illinois secures the No. 1 seed for the fourth time in program history after earning the top seed in 1998, 2005 and 2011.
For more information on the Big Ten Tournament, go to bigten.org.


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