GALESBURG, Ill. – Senior Joe Liberman threw yet another gem to lead the University of Chicago baseball team to a 2-0 victory over Cornell College in the opening round of the Midwest Conference Tournament Friday.
UChicago advances in the winner's bracket to take on Ripon, a 4-3 winner over host Monmouth. The game will take place at 2:30 p.m. Friday at Knox College's Blodgett Field in Galesburg, Ill.
The right-hander allowed just two hits and struck out six in eight innings and sophomore David Clarke closed out the game in the ninth to seal the Maroons' (24-10) first win in the MWC Tournament after joining the league this season.
Maroons' all-time runs leader Connor Hickey scored both runs in the contest, adding his 159th and 160th score, respectively. The first came in the bottom of the first, as Hickey walked and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Brian Lyle. Hickey scored on the next play on a Cornell error to make 1-0, Maroons.
Liberman dealt for the next seven frames, not allowing a Rams runner past first base. The Maroons capitalized in the bottom of the fifth, rallying with two outs behind a Hickey walk and steal. Lyle came through in the clutch, belting a single to score Hickey on a close play at the plate to create the final score.
Clarke (fifth save of the year) entered in the ninth, struck out the first batter and then after a one-out walk, forced the final Rams batter into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game.
- Friday, May 10: UChicago vs. Ripon, at Knox College (Midwest Tournament Second Round), 2:30 P.M.