Illini Win 27th Straight in Tight Big Ten Tournament Opener


MINNEAPOLIS -- Pat McInerney broke a tie with an RBI single in the bottom of the eighth inning and top-seeded Illinois beat Nebraska 3-2 on Wednesday night in the Big Ten tournament.

The win was Illinois' 27th straight, setting new school and Big Ten records.

Ryan Nagle singled up the middle to put the go-ahead run on base. After a walk, Nagle reached third on Jason Goldstein's sacrifice and scored on McInerney's single.

Tyler Jay retired three straight Nebraska hitters in the top of the ninth for the save.

Scott Schreiber and Luis Alvarado struck first for eighth-seeded Nebraska (34-21) with RBI hits in the top of the sixth inning for a 2-0 lead. Illinois' Reid Roper countered with a RBI single and Goldstein tied it with a sacrifice fly in the sixth.

Illinois (46-6-1) will face the Maryland-Michigan State winner Thursday. Nebraska will play the loser in an elimination game tournament.

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