NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Early offense and stellar pitching carried the second-ranked Vanderbilt baseball team to a 15-0 victory over Illinois-Chicago on Friday afternoon at Hawkins Field.
With the win, the Commodores improved to 7-1 on the young campaign while the Flames fell to 1-3.
“Our guys have been staying on top of the ball and staying in the middle of the field for the most part,” Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin said. “We had guys who were coming off the bench become contributors and that’s always a good feeling for them. It certainly builds their confidence.”
Vanderbilt secured its second shutout of the season using five arms to hold the Flames scoreless. The Commodores received an impressive start from Thomas Schultz who picked up his first career win. The sophomore right-hander worked five innings of one-hit baseball while racking up a career-high eight strikeouts.
Vanderbilt got out to an early lead with six runs in the third. The Commodores continued to add to their lead throughout the evening, scoring two runs in fifth and seventh innings before adding five in the eighth to put the game out of reach.
The trio of Carter Young, Enrique Bradfield Jr. and Jayson Gonzalez each contributed multi-hit outings, highlighted by a team-high three knocks from Bradfield Jr. Young connected on his third home run of the season – his third over the last four games – while Dominic Keegan recorded his team-leading fourth home run of the season.
With their home runs in the seventh inning, Young and Keegan became the first Vanderbilt duo to record back-to-back home runs since June 2, 2019, when Ty Duvall and Julian Infante went back-to-back against Indiana State.
The two teams return to the diamond at 2 p.m. Saturday with action airing live on SEC Network+.