Illinois and Notre Dame got their respective baseball seasons started in dramatic fashion on Friday afternoon, and while there was no shortage of offense for either club, the Irish prevailed on a ninth inning solo home run from Joe Hudson.
The scoring started quickly, as both teams scored two runs in the first inning and were tied at six after three innings of play. Illinois starting pitcher Kevin Johnson lasted just 2.3 innings, and Irish starter Sean Fitzgerald was finished after two innings of work.
Five Notre Dame players had a multi-hit afternoon at the plate, and the Irish finished with 17 hits as a team. First baseman Trey Mancini led the way with a 4-5 effort.
Outfielder Justin Parr went 4-6 with three RBI for the Illini.