On a day where the University of Miami basketball team had a chance at an ACC title, the Miami Hurricanes baseball team slipped under the radar.
The ‘Canes were coming off of a victory over Manhattan, and Miami’s bats were hot. Junior Zack Collins had a multiple home run performance just a couple of days earlier, and the Hurricanes had just scored ten runs in the series opener.
But while the basketball team seemed non-existent at times during the early portions of their game, there was nothing silent about how Miami’s baseball team started off the matchup.
In the bottom of the third inning, the Hurricanes struck first thanks to a sacrifice bunt from leadoff hitter Carl Chester. On the bunt, the pitcher nailed Chester on his way to first and as a result two runs scored. Due to the hit Manhattan didn’t get the out, but the inning had only just begun.
After an RBI single from Christopher Barr, Preseason All-American Zack Collins stepped up to the plate with a 3-0 lead. It had only been one full game since Zack Collins hit one out of the park, but the slugger couldn’t be contained any longer
BOMBA! ZACK COLLINS GOES YARD!— Hurricanes Baseball (@CanesBaseball) March 6, 2016
Third home run in the last three games!
Collins went on to go 2-2 in the ballgame, and the rest of Miami’s bats took care of business. Designated Hitter Edgar Michelangeli led the hit column for the ‘Canes, coming up with 3 hits in 5 at-bats. Michelangeli didn’t register an RBI, but scored three runs of his own thanks to great support in the lineup.
Miami scored 14 runs by the game’s conclusion, and attained a season high in runs for the second straight game. The win wasn’t all due to Miami’s offense; however, and pitcher Michael Mediavilla started off well.
The power pitching sophomore gave the ‘Canes six innings of work on the mound, and recorded 5 strikeouts before being replaced with freshman Andrew Cabezas. Mediavilla pitched 5 shutout innings for the Hurricanes, but things got interesting in the 6th inning.
Despite facing a 9 run deficit going into the 6th inning, the Jaspers didn’t back down. Thanks a sacrifice fly from catcher Chris Reynolds, Manhattan scored their first run of the series and continued their momentum for the next couple of innings. After scoring multiple runs in the 6th and 7th innings, Manhattan finally knocked a dent into Miami’s armor.
Although the Jaspers went on a run throughout the middle of the game; however, Miami never relinquished control. There were only three innings in which the Hurricanes did not score a run in the ballgame, and despite the fact that Manhattan scored four runs, Miami still won by a ten run margin.
The ‘Canes struggled more tonight than they did yesterday, but Miami still looked like an elite team. With conference play just about a week away, Miami needed to gain some momentum through this series. The Hurricanes play their final 2 non-conference games at home versus Maine and Stetson, and will begin conference play next week.
The Hurricanes have remained at their stable number 6 ranking all season, and will look to close out Manhattan for the series sweep Sunday afternoon. On the mound for Miami will be left handed pitcher Danny Garcia, and first pitch is set for one o’clock at Alex Rodriguez Park.