No. 18 Miami Baseball Takes Sunday Game from Rutgers, 5-3

Feb. 20, 2011

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E W: E. Whaey (1-0)
Rutgers 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 3 5 1 L: N. Roe (0-1)
Miami 0 0 0 5 0 0 0 0 x 5 7 0 S: D. Miranda (1)

2B: M. Broad, B. Fieger
HR: H. Martinez, S. Nyisztor
RBI: H. Martinez (2), B. Fieger (2), S. Nyisztor (3)
SB: N. Melendres (2), S. Rowland, B. Fieger, C. Mack

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CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The University ofMiami plated five runs in the fourth inning – highlighted by a two-run homer from Harold Martinez – and used superb relief pitching to preserve a 5-3 victory over Rutgers in the rubber game of the three-game series inside Alex Rodriguez Park Sunday afternoon.

Miami (2-1) had been searching for three days for that elusive big inning to open the offensive attack in the opening weekend of the 2011 campaign. They got that in the fourth inning on Sunday.

Martinez took a Nathaniel Roe 1-1 pitch deep over the left field wall for the Hurricanes’ first home run of the weekend. In fact, it was the first home run for either team in the series. He brought across Michael Broad, who was hit by a pitch one batter prior.

The offense continued to roll for the `Canes in the inning as a two-out rally began with Nathan Melendres being hit by a pitch, followed by freshman catcher Shane Rowland walking. Both batters would advance their position with a double steal before freshman first baseman Brad Fieger lined a two-run double to right center to score both, giving UMiami the 4-0 lead.

After a single from Chantz Mack then advanced Fieger to third, Mack went on the Roe pitch to Zeke DeVoss, bringing Rutgers’ catcher Michael Zavala up throwing, allowing Fieger to come in on the steal from third with Zavala trying to get the out on Mack swiping second.

Sophomore right-hander Eric Whaley continued his brilliant start on the mound in the fifth inning for UM, earning his third flawless inning of the game to that point.

Rutgers (1-2) would finally get to the Pompano Beach, Fla., native in the sixth inning, using a three-run home run from shortstop Steve Nyisztor to cut into the UM lead, 5-3.

Whaley finished the game with the win, going 5 2/3 innings with three runs allowed on four hits with four strikeouts.

Freshman Javi Salas and junior closer Daniel Miranda covered the last 3 1/3 innings on the hill for the Hurricanes, allowing just one hit in that span to preserve the win. Miranda earned his first save on the year, turning in 1 1/3 scoreless frames with just one hit allowed while striking out three.

The loss went to Roe, who went 5 2/3 frames while giving up five earned runs on six hits with three walks and two strikeouts.

Miami was led offensively on the day by Fieger’s 3-for-4 showing, including a double and two RBI. Rutgers was led at the plate by Nyisztor with a 1-for-3 day, adding his three RBI home run.

On the weekend, Miami was led by DeVoss with four hits, three of them going for extra bases, as well as Fieger turning in a four-hit series – three of those hits coming on Sunday. Defensively, the Hurricanes committed just one error in 135 attempts in the field for a percentage of .993.

The Hurricanes have now defeated the Scarlet Knights in three consecutive opening weekend series, including winning eight of the last 10 in the series overall.

Miami will get back to action on Wednesday, Feb. 23, traveling to Boca Raton to face Florida Atlantic inside FAU Stadium at 6:30 p.m.

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