CHAMPAIGN — Senior Kevin Johnson made quick work of Oakland in Illinois’ 4-0 nonconference baseball victory Friday at Illinois Field.
Johnson needed 79 pitches to post his third career complete-game shutout in a contest that took 1 hour, 43 minutes, the UI’s shortest game of the season.
“It was a great performance by Kevin tonight,” UI coach Dan Hartleb said of Johnson, who allowed three hits. “He really pounded the zone and got a lot of early swings. He had a bit of downward life on his fastball with a little bit of run at the end. He got a lot of ground-ball outs, and Thomas Lindauer was excellent at shortstop, so that combination led to a very good day for us.”
The Illini (15-6) scored three runs in the first inning, including senior Justin Parr’s first home run of the season.
Johnson retired the first 15 batters he faced before allowing a leadoff single in the sixth inning.
Lindauer recorded a season-high nine groundouts at shortstop, and Johnson (4-1) totaled 20 groundouts, three flyouts and three strikeouts.
“Thomas Lindauer made some unbelievable plays behind me,” Johnson said. “Our fielding was great all day, and our hitting did what we needed to do to get the win. That is probably the fewest pitches I have thrown for a complete game since before high school. I was really pleased with my performance.”
In men’s tennis:
Singles players sweep. Jared Hiltzik, ranked 42nd nationally, won at No. 1 singles, leading No. 19 Illinois to a 6-1 victory against host Wisconsin.
Hiltzik defeated Petr Satral 4-6, 7-5, 6-1.
Other singles winners for Illinois were Tim Kopinski at No. 2, Bruno Abdelnour at No. 3, Stephen Hoh at No. 4, Ross Guignon at No. 5 and Farris Gosea at No. 6.
In women’s tennis:
Squad snaps skid. Illinois defeated Wisconsin 5-2 at Atkins Tennis Center, snapping the Illini’s four-match losing streak and giving the UI its first Big Ten victory of the season.
“The team really came together in singles,” UI coach Michelle Dasso said. “Some serious leadership occurred after losing in doubles. We were two different teams in doubles and singles, and I’m really proud of how we played in singles.”
It was Illinois’ first victory in 2013 after the squad dropped the doubles point.
Singles winners for the Illini were Melissa Kopinski at No. 1, Allison Falkin at No. 2, Breanne Smutko at No. 3, Misia Kedzierski at No. 5 and Audrey O’Connor at No. 6.
In women’s track & field:
Richartz shows way. Junior Stephanie Richartz finished close to her personal best in the pole vault, jumping 14 feet, 13/4 inches at the Texas Relays in Austin.
UI freshman Morolake Akinosun (100 meters), the 400 relay and the 1,600 relay finished in the top eight in their respective events and advanced.