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Canes Drop Series Finale to Gators

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Miami can't come back after Florida's big first inning

USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Hurricanes failed to sweep their in-state rival Florida Gators, dropping the series finale 6-4 on Sunday afternoon at Mark Light Field. Before the Canes came to bat in the first inning they were down 4-0. The Gators four runs on six hits in the first off Hurricane starter Andrew Suarez. The Canes fought back, however, in their half of the first when Brad Fieger doubled in Tyler Palmer to cut the lead to 4-1. The score remained the same until Dale Carey led off the bottom of the third with a monster home run over the left field wall, it was Carey's second long ball of the series, and the season.

Florida bounced back in the top of the fourth. John Sternagel scored on a RBI groundout by Gator second baseman Casey Turgeon. Miami appeared to be out of the jam when Suarez struck out Taylor Gushue on a ball in the dirt, but Hurricane catcher Garrett Kennedy threw the ball into right field, scoring Buddy Reed from second and pushing the Florida lead to 6-2.

Miami kept scrapping and pushed across two more in their half of the fifth on back to back RBI singles by Tyler Palmer and David Thompson, respectively, to cut the gator lead to 6-4. The Hurricanes tried to mount a rally in the bottom of the ninth after a Garrett Kennedy walk and Alex Hernandez single. With two outs the Canes had the winning run at the plate in the person of Dale Carey. The Gators brought in their closer Eric Hanhold, who was able to retire Carey on a fly ball to center-field and earn the save.

Miami junior left-hander Andrew Suarez (1-1) was saddled with the loss, but was able to rebound from a horrible first and ate up some innings for Head Coach Jim Morris and save the bullpen. Suarez went seven innings, allowing eleven hits, striking out five and walking one. Of the six runs Suarez allowed, only four were earned. Thomas Woodrey came in to relieve Suarez and pitched the eighth and ninth innings for the Hurricanes.

The Hurricanes seemed to have found their power over the weekend. Following a 2013 season that saw Miami go deep only fourteen times, the Canes cranked six balls out of the park in three games against the Gators.

With the loss Miami drops to 4-3 on the year. After an exibition against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday, the Canes will make their first road trip of the season next weekend to face their arch-rival Florida State Seminoles in Tallahassee.