The Miami Hurricanes clinched a series win over the Virginia Tech Hokies due to a spectacular performance from Brian Van Belle. The junior worked 8.1 innings and allowed just six baserunners. Van Belle also set up Miami well for the series finale, as the ‘Canes used just one reliever out of the bullpen, Greg Veliz, in the game. The ‘Canes are 30-14 (13-10 ACC) with the win.
Miami scored the lone run of the game in the bottom of the second. JP Gates led off the inning with a single, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and then moved to third on a Michael Amditis single. Alex Toral then connected with a ball and sent it two feet short of the wall in right for a sac fly that turned out to be the deciding run.
The run was the lone mistake made by Virginia Tech starter Chris Gerard. He worked 5.1 innings and kept Miami from extending the lead by working out of multiple jams. Gerard allowed seven walks, but gave up just the one run on the evening.
The most crucial part of the game for the Hurricanes may have been their defense. Miami had no errors during the game. Hopefully the ‘Canes have turned the corner from their struggles fielding, as it has been an issue that’s cost Miami multiple games.
Tomorrow, Miami goes for what would be a huge sweep. Tyler Keysor will take the mound for the Hurricanes after starting on Wednesday, and almost every pitcher besides Greg Veliz will be available out of the bullpen for Miami. A sweep in a series where Miami was down their two best starters would be a statement to the rest of the country that the Hurricanes have the pitching depth to contend in the NCAA Tournament. For a team that sits on the bubble of hosting, with the 12th best RPI in the country, it could be a huge boost for Miami’s chances to host a Coral Gables Regional once again.
Winning Pitcher: Brian Van Belle (6-2, 8.1 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 K)
Losing Pitcher: Chris Gerard (3-2, 5.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 7 BB. 2 K)
Save: Greg Veliz (7)
Date & Time: Sunday, April 28. 1:00 P.M. Eastern
Hurricanes Starter: Tyler Keysor (4-0, 4.97 ERA)
Virginia Tech Starter: Not announced
Radio: 790 The Ticket / 990 ESPN Deportes
Television: ACC Network Extra