The Daily Illini

Former Illini baseball player Nathan Lavender walks off the field after pitching three outs on April 18 against Purdue. Nathan Lavender will now be playing in the MLB with the New York Mets.

Former Illini Nate Lavender adjusts to life as a pro

By Will Payne, Assistant Sports Editor July 31, 2021

In early July, the 2021 MLB Draft took place, as all 30 major league clubs looked to draft some of the best up-and-coming talent the game of baseball has to offer. During the three days and twenty rounds,...

Illinois pitcher Nathan Lavender stands near the dugout prior to the game against Purdue on April 18. Lavender and teammate Andrew Hoffmann were selected in the 2021 MLB Draft.

Andrew Hoffmann, Nathan Lavender selected in 2021 MLB Draft

By Will Payne, Assistant Sports Editor July 13, 2021

The 2021 MLB draft wrapped up after its third day, as major league clubs are selecting amateurs from round 11 to round 20.  In the 12th round and with the 367th pick in the MLB Draft, the Atlanta Braves...

Justin Janas walks through the dugout during the game against Purdue April 18. Five players from the Illini baseball team will made the All-Big Ten team this season.

Five Illini earn spots on All-Big Ten teams

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 30, 2021

The Big Ten announced its All-Big Ten honors, and the Illini saw five players make an All-Big Ten team this season.  Justin Janas and Jackson Raper were each selected to the All-Big Ten First Team....

Junior Jacob Campbell holds his mitt up to catch a ball during a game. Campbell was the leading force in the Illini’s dominant offensive performance this weekend despite losing to Rutgers in the final series of the season.

Illinois loses final series of season to Rutgers; Janas finishes with best batting average in Big Ten

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 30, 2021

The Illinois baseball team’s season came to a close this weekend after the Illini went 1-2 in Piscataway, New Jersey against Rutgers.  Game one was a duel between both program’s top arms in Andrew...

Junior Kellen Sarver catches the baseball at first base against Maryland May 7. Sarver says the team will strike first like they have been for their game against Rutger May 28.

Illinois prepares for Rutgers in pivotal final series of regular season

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 28, 2021

In his fourth season with the Illini, Kellen Sarver is more than acclimated to the emotions the end of a season brings. This week, the Illini prepared for their final series of the season against Rutgers...

Senior Jackson Raper rounds second base and attempts to reach third during the game against Purdue. The Illinois baseball team closed out their final homestand with a series win over Penn State.

Illinois closes out final homestand with series win over Penn State

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 23, 2021

Head coach Dan Hartleb was eyeing Kellen Sarver and his son Zak, who were waiting for the perfect opportunity to dump the Gatorade bucket full of ice water on their coach’s head, in his periphery, after...

Freshman Clayton Johnson pitches on May 7 against Maryland. The team is set to play against Indiana this Tuesday.

Illini take series win over Iowa decisively in back half

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 16, 2021

The Illini found a lively, emphatic environment at Duane Banks field this weekend as Iowa allowed 1,022 fans into the park for game one – the second largest fan attendance the Illini have seen in a game...

Left-handed pitcher Nathan Lavender pitches against a batter from Michigan State April 17. The Illinois baseball team travel to Iowa City for a three-game series against the Hawkeyes with three weekends left in the regular season.

Illini push through finals ahead of road series against Iowa

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 14, 2021

With just three weekends left in the regular season, the Illini travel to Iowa City for a three-game series against the Hawkeyes. After snapping Maryland's six-game winning streak, Illinois dropped the...

Senior Jackson Raper high fives Tom Jurack after coming off the field during the game against Purdue April 18. The Illinois baseball team is set to play at Illinois Field against Maryland this weekend after seven away games.

Illinois returns home to play Maryland after seven games on road

By Gabby Hajduk, Staff Writer May 7, 2021

After several losing weekends, the Illinois baseball team has turned the corner recently, sweeping Purdue two weekends ago and splitting a four-game series with No. 22 Michigan last weekend. The Illini...

The Illinois baseball team meets on the pitcher’s mound to discuss strategy against Purdue April 18. The Illini are currently struggling with pitching.

Column | Pitching struggles negate one of Big Ten’s top lineups

By Carson Gourdie, Staff Writer May 6, 2021

In Major League Baseball, if a player gets a base hit three out of 10 times, fame and fortune follow. While Illinois isn’t quite at that mark, the Illini have a combined batting average of .286, the...

Sophomore Riley Gowens pitches against Purdue on April 18. Although he was injured, he has healed and continues to make progress.

No quitter, no-hitter: Gowens astounds coaches, teammates after two-year injury rehab

By Gabby Hajduk, Staff Writer May 4, 2021

In May 2018, Riley Gowens was just weeks away from wrapping up his Libertyville High School baseball career and heading down to Champaign to play for Dan Hartleb and the Illinois baseball team. The No....

Sophomore Riley Gowens pitches against Purdue on April 19.  The team prepares for their home matches against Maryland this upcoming weekend.

Illini snag two against No. 22 Michigan

By Jared Ebanks, Staff Writer May 2, 2021

The Illini baseball team had to adapt quickly heading into this weekend's pod play. Hours before play was set to begin, Northwestern pulled out due to health and safety concerns leaving the Illini to face...

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