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    Diamond Note #8: End-of-Season Illini Intrigue
    Illinois Field will be home to five games as No. 28 Illinois heads down the homesretch with a half-game lead in the Big Ten standings.

    Illinois Field will be home to five games as No. 28 Illinois heads down the homesretch with a half-game lead in the Big Ten standings.

    May 3, 2009

    Hey Illini Fans!

    Well, it's certainly an exciting time to be following Fighting Illini Baseball. We're fresh off a three-game sweep at Northwestern this weekend, making it two straight Big Ten series that we've swept. We now stand alone in first place in the conference with six more games left to play. The guys took care of business this weekend at Northwestern and have now put themselves in a good position to finish the regular season strong.

    With the short trip to Evanston this weekend, it was nice to see a very large contingent of Orange and Blue at our games. Our fans basically filled up all the bleachers behind our dugout and were loud and supportive the whole weekend. A lot of the players had their families and friends at the games and it created a good home field environment away from home. When we got to the ballpark the last two days a group of fans had even beaten us there and started to tailgate. It was pretty cool to see.

    So we're at home for five games this week, which are the last five home games of the season. It's a pretty crucial stretch for us. Hopefully we'll see a lot of fans out this week to support the team. The big promotion of the year will be taking place on Friday. We're playing Ohio State this coming weekend, who is right in the hunt for the championship as well. If you come out to the game you will not only get in for free (a good perk in itself), but you will also get some free food (a really good perk) and will get the chance to win some Cardinals tickets and some Cubs tickets (a very good perk). And if you stick around after the game (and after an Illini win, hopefully), you'll get to see a fireworks show. So bring the whole family out for a fun night of Illini Baseball.

    We've got final exams starting on Friday, so it's a juggling act between the end of school and baseball. We'll be at Purdue during the last few days of final exams, so some of our guys (myself included) are going to have to take a final while on the road. That will be interesting, but that's what happens when you're in-season at the end of the semester.

    That's all for now. Until next time, Go Illini!
    Michael Schroeder

    Illinois Athletics

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