No. 13 Baseball Thumps Seminoles in Finale
|W – E. Sosa (6-3)||6.0||6||0||0||1||5|
|L – D. Carlton (3-3)||2.1||7||7||7||1||2|
|UM – G. Iskenderian||4||3||4||2||0||0|
|UM – Z. Collins||4||2||2||2||0||1|
|PLAYER OF THE GAME|
|Enrique Sosa | Jr. | RHP
The righthander continued his dominance at home, improving his home record to 5-0 and lowering his home ERA to 0.96.
CORAL GABLES. Fla. — The only thing hotter than the sweltering 95-degree weather at Mark Light Field Sunday was the Miami offense.
The thirteenth-ranked Hurricanes plated runs in each of the first five innings, including four home runs by four different players, as the hosts salvaged their series by thumping No. 12 Florida State 12-0 in an afternoon scorcher.
Miami, who outhit the Seminoles 18-7, rebounded from a blowout loss Saturday night and a heartbreaking 17-inning defeat Friday.
“This is a crazy game,” head coach Jim Morris said. “It’s amazing, from one day to the next, how this game can change, from one side to the other side.”
Junior George Iskenderian tied a career high with four hits, and joked afterwards that the sun might have heated up the Hurricanes bats.
All nine Hurricane starters recorded at least one hit in an impressive barrage.
“It’s baseball. You have to have a short memory,” Iskenderian said. “I think every guy in the locker room believes in themselves, regardless of what happened those first two games.
“Every day is a new day in baseball. We took advantage of that today.”
Not to be outdone, junior Enrique Sosa continued his home dominance with another strong start. The righthander tossed 6.0+ innings, scattering just six hits and no runs with five strikeouts.
“This game starts with pitching,” Morris said. “He pitched a great game. We got some big hits and got a big lead early, but he pitched well.”
With the performance, Sosa (6-3) lowered his home ERA to 0.96 and improved his home record to 5-0.
“It felt really good. All my pitches were working,” Sosa said. “I could spot up almost every pitch. The defense behind me played really well – that helps.”
Iskenderian said a pregame speech from captain Bryan Garcia helped motivate the team, who struggled to generate any momentum in Saturday night’s 15-5 loss.
“He said, ‘Don’t forget the reason why you started playing,'” Iskenderian recalled. “‘Those first two games are over. Just come out here, have fun the way you did when you were in little league, just play as hard as you can, and the rest will take care of itself.’
“That’s what we did today.”
Nine of Miami’s first 10 runs came via homers.
A three-run blast from David Thompson opened the scoring in the first inning, while senior Garrett Kennedy made it 4-0 with a solo shot in the second.
The home run was Thompson’s team-leading 11th of the season.
Florida State righthander Drew Carlton (3-3) lasted just 2.1 innings before giving way to lefthander Bryant Holtmann with runners on the corners in the third.
The pitching change did little to deter the Hurricanes (31-13, 16-8 ACC), however, as sophomore Willie Abreu cranked his third home run of the season over the rightfield fence to put Miami comfortably ahead at 8-0.
Zack Collins’ two-run blast off reliever Alec Byrd swelled the Hurricanes’ lead to 10-0 over the Seminoles (33-13, 16-8 ACC).
“We definitely swung the bat well as a team today,” Collins said. “We felt like we had to get them back today, knowing they’re our rivals. We were not going to let them sweep us.”
Sosa matched his offense by cruising through the early going. Beginning with a strikeout of Seminoles leadoff hitter Josh Delph that stranded two runners in the second, Sosa set down seven straight to protect a comfortable lead.
Sosa threw 87 pitches before departing in the seventh due to a minor laceration on his right foot. After a conference on the mound involving pitching coach J.D. Arteaga and the team’s athletic trainer, Sosa gave way to sophomore righthander Cooper Hammond.
“It’s just a little cut. I’ve been battling it the last couple of games,” Sosa said. “It’s going to be fine. I put a pad over it [before the game] and it moved. It’s not bad at all.”
Hammond pitched a scoreless seventh while sophomore lefthander Danny Garcia struck out four batters in 2.0 innings to close out the game.
“You leave the ballpark with a good feeling,” Morris said about winning the finale. “I would have liked to win the series, but I thought we played well today. I thought it was a big game.”
Miami will hit the road for a series with Pittsburgh beginning with a doubleheader on Saturday, May 2.