Illinois baseball hosts Indiana State for first home game of 2023 season

By Adam Rosen, Assistant Sports Editor

After a month of games on the road, the Illini make their long-awaited return to Champaign for the first time in 2023. The Illini will host the 7-8 Indiana State Sycamores for their home opener.

The Illini enter at 7-5, coming off a weekend series split with the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. The Illini did not finish that series, as the final game was canceled due to inclement weather.

The Illini offense gave a spectacular effort in their two games against the Chanticleers, putting up 21 runs across the two games. However, the pitching continued to struggle, at least in the first game, giving up 16 runs on Friday. Illinois was able to stifle Coastal Carolina’s bats the next day, only allowing three runs.

On the season, the Illini pitching staff holds an earned run average of 5.90, a decrease of .32 from before this past weekend. The bats have posted a .875 on-base plus slugging percentage this season, which also went up after the weekend series.

Senior outfielder Cam McDonald, junior infielder Drake Westcott and sophomore catcher Camden Janik lead the team with three home runs apiece. Amongst qualified players, Janik also leads the team amongst qualified players in batting average and on-base percentage.

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    Meanwhile, the Sycamores started their season poorly at 2-8, but they have since reeled off five straight wins, which provides the Illini with an opportunity to stop the Sycamores’ momentum while also picking up some traction as they get closer to playing in conference.

    The Illini will take their places at Illinois Field for the first time this season today at 3 p.m. It will only be a one-game series.


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