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Michigan baseball defeats Illinois 5-3, advances to Big Ten Tournament championship game

Michigan baseball upset No. 4 Illinois on Saturday to advance to the Big Ten Tournament championship game.

We have zero U-M baseball pictures in our database, sorry!
We have zero U-M baseball pictures in our database, sorry!
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Quite like the softball team, it's Michigan baseball's turn to make noise in postseason play and are on the cusp of a NCAA Tournament appearance.

Saturday's 5-3 victory over Illinois, who had a 27-game winning streak snapped two days ago, helps advance Michigan to the Big Ten Tournament championship game against Maryland. The last NCAA Tournament appearance by the baseball was squad was in 2008, which was also the last time the Wolverines won a conference tournament championship.

Junior Jacob Cronenworth opened up the scoring for the Wolverines in the second inning after a two out, bases loaded single to center field brought in two runs.

Cronenworth also made a highlight reel play in the third inning:


Michigan's two-run lead would be cut to one in the fourth inning after a double by Illini senior David Kerian scores junior catcher Jason Goldstein. The Illini would tied the game in the next inning after a junior Ryan Nagle RBI single. The sixth inning saw the Wolverines trailing after a Kerian home run.

In a back-and-forth affair, the sixth inning saw a total of four runs and two lead changes. To start off the scoring, Kerian would put Illinois out in front after a solo home run in the top of the inning made the score 3-2. To finish at the bottom of the inning, Michigan tied the game with Johnny Slater being hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, scoring a runner. Kendall Patrick grounding into a double-play that scored a runner to put the Wolverines in front for good. Cronenworth added an insurance run on an infield single that scored a runner.

Michigan will play Maryland on Sunday at 1 p.m. CDT on the Big Ten Network.