As our own Jerry Steinberg posted yesterday:
The Miami Hurricanes are once again ACC Coastal Champions for the 2015 season. The Canes are currently riding an 8-game win streak heading into their final week of the season, which feature a midweek matchup against state rival, #15 FAU, and a weekend series against Georgia Tech.
The win streak ties the team's second best winning stretch, when the Canes won eight consecutive games from March 10-21, and nine straight games from April 1-15.
In the midst of the current 8-game win streak, the weekend series the Canes just completed against New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) was one for the ages. The Canes swept the series and won by the scores of 26-0, 13-1, and 19-1. The 26 runs scored by the Canes in game one was the most scored in a game since May 2, 2003, when they defeated Pace University 27-1, according to a post-game interview.
"It was a good win for us. A lot of guys played well, pitchers and hitters. We played good defense all weekend...it's a nice way to go into this last week of the season. Hopefully our confidence is up," Head Coach Jim Morris said in an interview after the Sunday victory (hurricanessports.com).
The #12 ranked Canes split the previous two match ups against the #15 FAU (36-14), losing the first game 5-3 in Boca Raton, and winning the second game 4-3 in extras in Coral Gables. The rubber match will be Tuesday, May 12 at 6 p.m. in Coral Gables. The Canes close out the season in a 3-game home conference series against Georgia Tech (32-18), (13-14). The Demon Deacons sport arguably the ACC's best hitter, Will Craig, who is currently leading the conference in average (.407), RBI (58), and is second in the ACC in home runs (13) to Miami's David Thompson.
Hurricanes hitters are not to be overlooked, either. Second baseman George Iskenderian is currently leading the team in batting at .380, which ranks second in the ACC behind Craig. The Canes also field another top 10 hitter in the conference in catcher Garrett Kennedy, who's hitting .344. Four more hitters in the Canes' have an average over .300: David Thompson (.335), Brandon Lopez (.324), Willie Abreu (.308), and Zack Collins (.304) (min. 100 at-bats).
Collins is holding true to form, as the former 2014 ACC Rookie of the Year and National Freshman of the Year by Baseball America has already eclipsed his 11 home runs of last season (12) and looks to finish the season above .300 after finishing the season a mere two percentage points shy at .298. The sophomore is also hitting .533 (16-30) over the team's current wins streak, hitting seven home runs and driving in 25 runners.
"I don't know what to say. I guess I'm just seeing the ball well. It happens to everybody at one part of the season, where you go on a tear. Everyone's had it. I guess it's my time," Collins said in a post-game interview (hurricanes sports.com).
Pitching has continued last season's trend and remains a strength of the team, with the four main starters of Danny Garcia (6-1), Thomas Woodrey (5-2), Andrew Suarez (6-1) and Enrique Sosa (7-3) accumulating a 24-6 record. Garcia leads the group with a 2.88 ERA.
The ACC Tournament is set for May 20-24 in Durham, NC. Miami currently sits second in the full ACC standings, 19-8 in conference, behind new arrival Louisville (38-11), (21-3).