The UIC Flames baseball team opened up the 2012 Horizon League Baseball Tournament with a victory on Wednesday, beating Butler 10-1 at Les Miller Field. The Flames scored five runs in the first inning and never allowed things to get close as the Flames' pitching stifled Butler.
Flames starter Joey Begel was impressive for UIC, allowing just four hits over seven shutout innings. He was able to work with a pretty substantial lead all day, as the Flames managed to extend their initial 5-0 advantage up to 9-0 by the end of the fourth inning.
Alex Grunenwald led the offense for UIC, finishing the day 3-for-4 with a homer, two runs scored and three RBI. The Flames also got multi-hit games from John Coen and Joe Betcher, who finished the game with three RBI himself.
In a press release for the team's Wednesday win, the school explained what's next for UIC baseball:
The Flames advance to play either No. 1 Valparaiso at 8 p.m. or No. 2 Wright State at 3 p.m. on Thursday, depending on the results of the No. 3 Milwaukee vs. No. 6 Youngstown State contest. If Milwaukee wins then UIC will play the Crusaders, but if Youngstown State wins then the Flames will square off against the Raiders.
For more on the 2012 Horizon League Baseball Tournament, keep it locked to SB Nation Chicago.