Miami won 5-1 over the Duke Blue Devils to secure their fourth straight weekend series win and finish the regular season on a high note before beginning ACC Tournament play next Tuesday or Wednesday. The Hurricanes will be the No.4 seed in the ACC Tournament, and will have the loser of today’s N.C. State vs UNC game and Virginia as the other two teams in their group in Durham.
The ‘Canes won today despite five errors in the field thanks to great pitching from Chris McMahon, Tyler Keysor, and Daniel Federman. McMahon made his second start since returning from injury today, and worked five scoreless frames before leaving due to reaching his pitch count limit. The sophomore struck out six batters and allowed just one hit on the way to his third win of the season. Keysor and Federman combined for four innings out of the bullpen. They allowed just one run, which was unearned, and helped the ‘Canes forget about a rough performance from the bullpen last night.
Miami’s offense had a much more productive game as compared to last night, scoring five runs on nine hits. In the first, Ray Gil drove an RBI single to right that scored Jordan Lala from third. Gil tried to go to second base as Adrian Del Castillo went to third on the play and seemed to get caught in a rundown. Gil managed to dive back safely into first, which let Del Castillo score to make the game 2-0. To make matters worse for Duke, Gil was awarded second base as the first base umpire felt Chris Crabtree interfered with Gil’s path to the bag. JP Gates immediately made Duke pay for the mistake, as he drove a ground-rule double to right that scored Gil and gave Miami an early 3-0 lead.
The Hurricanes added on a run in the fourth and sixth to extend their lead. In the fourth, Freddy Zamora, who had a strong series in his return from injury, drove in Jordan Lala with a single to right. In the top of the sixth Miami took advantage of another Duke error, with Jordan Lala driving in Chad Crosbie, who had advanced to third on a throwing error.
In the top of the eighth Duke finally made Miami pay for their sloppy play in the field. Joey Loperfido put himself on base with a single and moved to second on what should have been the third out of the inning but instead turned into an error. He then stole third and scored after Michael Amditis’ throw to third sailed into the outfield.
The Hurricanes finish the regular season at 38-17 (18-12 ACC), their best record since 2016. If Miami wins one game at the ACC Tournament next weekend they’re almost certain to play at Mark Light Field again as a regional host in the NCAA Tournament.
N.C. State currently leads UNC 7-0, meaning Group D of the ACC Tournament would look like this:
Winning Pitcher: Chris McMahon (3-2, 5.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K)
Losing Pitcher: Cooper Stinson (1-4, 1.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K)
ACC Tournament Game 1
Miami will play either Tuesday or Wednesday against UVA or the loser of UNC vs N.C. State. A starter is not announced for the ‘Canes.