Story Courtesy UM
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Sixth-ranked Miami dropped a tightly contested series finale with No. 4 Louisville Sunday, falling in the afternoon affair by a final score of 4-3 at Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field.
Despite the loss, the Hurricanes (16-4, 4-2 ACC) captured their second straight ACC series victory and their fourth in the first five weekends of the season.
The ACC series loss was the first suffered by Louisville since joining the conference prior to 2015.
“It was a very good series for us and a very good week for us – winning on the road [at UCF] then winning the series,” head coach Jim Morris said. “I was disappointed with the way we played today. We made some mistakes that gave them some opportunities.”
Junior Zack Collins had two of Miami’s four hits on the day; he doubled in the first inning and connected on his sixth home run of the season in the sixth.
Junior Danny Garcia surrendered four hits and four runs (three earned) over 5.0 innings. He walked a career-high four batters and struck out one across 76 pitches.
Garcia, who had been feeling under the weather over the weekend and was not in the team dugout during Friday or Saturday’s games, threw 76 pitches.
“I didn’t come out strong today,” Garcia said. “I should be coming out 100 percent, all the time - even if I’m ill, to have that mentality, the confidence to build up and pitch the way I’ve been pitching. Today wasn’t the day. I didn’t have my command.”
The Cardinals (16-4, 4-2 ACC) plated the opening run on an RBI single from Danny Rosenbaum in the first, but Miami responded with two of its own in the home half to take an early lead.
A walk from Christopher Barr and the double from Collins put two runners in scoring position for Jacob Heyward, who knocked in a run on an RBI groundout.
Johnny Ruiz then followed with a groundball up the middle that snuck under the glove of Louisville second baseman Nick Solak to score Collins from third, giving Miami a 2-1 advantage.
The lead was short-lived, however, as the Cardinals tied the game in the fourth on a solo home run by Blake Tiberi. The Cardinals added a run on a sacrifice fly from Nick Solak in the fifth to regain a 3-2 lead.
Though Garcia (3-2) surrendered just three earned runs, Miami’s offense was largely stymied by Cardinals lefthander Drew Harrington.
Collins (2-for-3) had the Hurricanes’ only two hits off Harrington (4-1).
“We faced a great arm today…Harrington is probably one of the better arms we’ll face all year,” Collins said. “He had his stuff today.”
Freshman Andrew Cabezas continued to impressive after being called upon in the sixth with the bases loaded and no outs.
The righthander allowed just a sacrifice fly to Devin Hairston before inducing a double play to hold the Miami deficit at 4-2.
Cabezas would go on to toss 3.0 innings, extending his personal scoreless streak to 10.1 innings.
The Hurricanes threatened in the eighth with back-to-back, two-out singles from Ruiz and Brandon Lopez. But junior Willie Abreu, who was the hero in Friday’s win over Louisville with a walk-off grand slam, struck out to end the threat.
The Hurricanes return to Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field Wednesday for a matchup with Bethune-Cookman. First pitch for the contest, slated for broadcast on ESPN3, is set for 6 p.m.