It was a winding road for Miami, but in the end, the Canes were able to beat Long Beach State on Sunday night and advance to Super Regionals.
BASE HIT!! CANES WIN!!! pic.twitter.com/D8YkxoBY9z— Hurricanes Baseball (@CanesBaseball) June 6, 2016
FINAL SCORE— StateOfTheU.com (@TheStateOfTheU) June 6, 2016
LONG BEACH STATE 8#CANES WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!
Can you say #MarkLightMagic— Blake James (@CanesAllAccess) June 6, 2016
Miami, who beat Stetson 4-2 and Long Beach State 4-3 in the earlier games in the Coral Gables Regional, got out to a big lead against the Dirtbags on Sunday night. Powered by homeruns from Zack Collins and Willie Abreu, Miami had an 8-1 lead in the 5th inning.
The 6th inning, however, was a different story. Long Beach State scored 6 runs in that frame to cut Miami's lead to 8-7. Add in another run in the 8th inning, and the game was tied at 8.
After Miami loaded the bases with no outs in the 8th, Miami came up empty. Long Beach State was held scoreless in the 9th, and that left it up to Miami.
1B Christopher Barr worked a leadoff walk for Miami. 3B Edgar Michelangeli bunted him over to 2nd and a Carl Chester flyout to RF got Barr to 3rd. And then, up stepped Randy Batista.
Batista, a junior from Kissimmee, FL, came up in a huge spot. Facing a very good LBSU pitcher in Lucas Jacobsen, who had pitched well in both games against the Canes, Batista lined an 0-1 pitch for single into right field, scoring Barr, and winning the game for Miami.
Walk off to the Super Regionals! See you next weekend! pic.twitter.com/AtPrEbTdJg— Manny Diaz (@Coach_MannyDiaz) June 6, 2016
The walk-off hit gave Miami a clean 3-0 sweep of the Coral Gables Regional, and sets up an all-ACC matchup in the Super Regionals vs. Boston College, winners of the Oxford Regional.
But for now, we celebrate this win, congratulate this team, and get ready to host Super Regionals a mere 2 wins away from returning to Omaha for the College World Series.
Congratulations, Canes. Keep it going!!