YSU Drops Regular Season Finale 9-6, Will Be Tournament’s Fifth Seed

Matt Sullivan (Photo by Alyson Boyer Rode)
Matt Sullivan (Photo by Alyson Boyer Rode)

The Youngstown State baseball team lost 9-6 in the regular-season finale at UIC on Saturday afternoon and will enter next week's Horizon League Tournament as the fifth seed.

The Penguins got down 9-3 to the Flames before Matt Sullivan hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning. UIC won the regular-season title and will be the top seed in the tournament, which begins Wednesday in Whiting, Ind. at Oil City Stadium. YSU will play the host, fourth-seeded Valparaiso, in the first game of the tournament on Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET. Wright State will be the No. 2 seed, Milwaukee is seeded third and Oakland is sixth.

UIC scored a run in the bottom of the first to go up 1-0, and Jason Shirley's two-run single for the Penguins in the third put them up 2-1. YSU left two runners in scoring position in the inning, and UIC's Jeff Boehm hit a three-run homer in the bottom half to put the Flames ahead 4-2.

Anthony Rohan's RBI triple in the fourth got the Penguins within a run, but UIC went on to score single tallies in the fourth and fifth innings to go up 6-3. The Flames then plated three big runs on just one hit in the seventh inning to take a 9-3 lead. The three runs came in on back-to-back hit batsmen and a walk with the bases loaded.

Sullivan's home run to left center, his third of the season, came with Lorenzo Arcuri and Kevin Hix on base and made the score 9-6.

Sullivan finished the game with three hits, three runs scored and three RBIs, and Frank Califano, Shane Willoughby and Rohan all had two hits. Califano hit safely in YSU's final 24 Horizon League games and will enter the conference tournament on an 18-game streak.