NASHVILLE --- Ryan Flaherty's two-run game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth capped of a furious Vanderbilt comeback in a 5-4 win over Illinois Chicago Friday evening at Hawkins Field.
The game was played in a consistent rain the entire evening that turned into snow in the latter stages of the game.
The Commodores (7-3) went into the bottom of the ninth down 4-1. Andrew Giobbi led off the ninth with a single and moved to second on a grounder to first by Jonathan White. Parker Hanks then lined out to right for the second out. Illinois-Chicago (3-5) coach Mike Dee went to the bullpen and brought in Adam Worthington to try and close out the game.
The Commodores were down to their final strike when Brian Harris drew a full-count walk. David Macias then singled down the left field line to score Giobbi and cut the deficit to 4-2. Alex Feinberg came up and was down to his final strike, before coming through with a RBI single to right-center to score Harris to make it 4-3. The snow started to come down at a heavier pace when Ryan Flaherty hit a two-strike shallow fly ball to centerfield that Steve McGuiggan could not see, dropping for a base hit. Macias scored and Alex Feinberg also came around third and scored, just beating the throw and tag at home plate for the winning run.
Chase Reid (2-0) pitched the final two innings, allowing one unearned run on two hits with two strikeouts to pick up the win for VU.
Worthington (0-1) faced four batters in the ninth and did not record an out while giving up three runs on three hits with a walk in the losing effort.
Illinois-Chicago took a 1-0 lead in the first, scoring on a Tony Altavilla RBI single.
That run was the only one Commodore Taylor Hill would give up in his first collegiate start. He allowed three hits while striking out seven and walking three in 5.2 innings of work.
Jason Ganek's RBI single in the seventh made it 2-0. The Commodores scored their first run of the game in the bottom half on a RBI single by Brian Harris.
The Flames came right back with a run in the eighth and another in the ninth on a RBI squeeze bunt single by Andy Leonard to make it 4-1.
UIC starter Derrick Miramontes scattered seven hits over 6.1 innings and allowed just one hit while striking out five and walking one.