Baseball Wins Eighth Straight Behind Career Night from Ewing

March 22, 2011

Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E W: Steven Ewing (2-1)
UCF 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 5 0 L: Brian Adkins (3-1)
Miami 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 X 4 6 0 S: Sam Robinson (3)

2B: N/A
HR: M. Broad, D. Luciano
RBI: M. Broad (4), D. Luciano
SB: T. Shreve

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CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The first time Michael Broad hit a Grand Slam in a Miami Hurricanes baseball uniform, it was in an exhibition game against the Florida Marlins earlier this year.  This time, it meant a lot more as Broad ripped a shot over the scoreboard at Alex Rodriguez Park, propelling the `Canes to a 4-1 victory over the visiting Knights of UCF on Tuesday night.

The other hero of the night was sophomore pitcher Stephen Ewing (2-1, 2.48 ERA) who went a career-high 7 1/3 innings for the Hurricanes (13-8), striking out a career-high 12 – the most by any UM pitcher this season – and picked up his second win of the season.

In a quick game that lasted just 2 hours and 14 minutes, Miami struggled early at the plate against UCF (16-5) starter Brian Adkins (3-1, 2.51 ERA), managing just two hits through the first five innings. For tonight’s starting pitchers on both sides, it was the second time the two have squared off against each other, while attending the same high school in Orlando playing for University High School.

A solo homerun by UCF’s Derek Luciano in the top of the third had the `Canes trailing going into the bottom of the sixth.  Stephen Perez singled up the middle with one out, and advanced to second on a balk by Adkins.  Nathan Melendres then hit an infield single, and the rally was on for UMiami.

Then came Harold Martinez, who was playing his eighth-straight game at first base, ripping a single to right field and extending his hit streak to seven games, while loading the bases in the process.  Coincidentally, Martinez, who had struggled early through the year, has hit .500 since the move to first, and the `Canes have won each of those eight games.

Broad stepped up and hit a deep shot into the night that put the Hurricanes up for good and handed Adkins his first loss of the campaign.  The Hurricanes would combine for a season-high 15 strikeouts to keep the Golden Knights scoreless over the final six innings. The 15 strikeouts by the `Canes was a team season-high.

Miami continues its six-game home-stand tomorrow night against Florida Gulf Coast (12-9) who defeated USF on Tuesday night, 9-5, in Fort Myers.  Freshman left-hander AJ Salcines (0-0, 1.93 ERA) will get the start for the Hurricanes, while fellow lefty Kevin Bryant will take the mound for the Eagles of FGCU.

Wednesday’s game is slated to begin at 6 p.m.

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University of Miami Postgame Notes:

With the win, the Hurricanes are now…

  • 13-8 overall
  • On a eight game winning streak
  • 15-3 vs. UCF all-time
  • 10-3 at Alex Rodriguez Park this season
  • 5-4 in games when the opponent starts a left-handed pitcher
  • 10-1 when leading after six innings

 Tonight’s Starters
Nathan Melendres was slotted at the DH position, the first time this season he has not been in the outfield when in the lineup. David Villasuso started behind the plate for his third consecutive game, and batted eighth. Harold Martinez and Brad Fieger started at first and third respectively for the eighth straight game.

Martinez Continues Tear
Since switching to first base eight games ago, Harold Martinez has hit .500 with a .577 slugging percentage, and has raised his average over 100 points since his rough start. Martinez also pushed his hitting streak to seven games, as he went 2-4 on the day. The move has coincided with the `Canes recent surge of eight straight victories.   

A Career Night
Sophomore starter Steven Ewing had his most impressive start of his career, notching a career-high 12 strikeouts in a career best 7 1/3 innings. He allowed five hits and walked just one batter, and his only blemish came in the top of the third when we allowed a leadoff homerun. His 12 strikeouts is an individual team high for the season, and the 15 for the team set a team season high. 

A Bomb for Broad
Michael Broad hit his first homerun of the season in grand fashion when he rocketed a fastball over the scoreboard for a Grand Slam in sixth inning to give the `Canes a 4-1 lead, a lead they would never relinquish. Broad hit a Grand Slam in an exhibition against the Marlins on Feb. 27, but it was his first official homerun since June 6, 2010 against Texas A&M in the NCAA Coral Gables Regional. It was the `Canes first grand slam since May 27 of last year when Zeke DeVoss cleared the bases against Boston College.

Faces in the Crowd
`Canes great and NFL Hall of Famer Ted Hendricks was in attendance for tonight’s game, as well as former Heisman Trophy Winner Desmond Howard.