Miami Drops Series Opener to Duke 4-3
DURHAM, N.C. – Miami put the tying run on base in the ninth inning, but fell to host No. 23 Duke, 4-3, in the series opener at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
Duke reliever Jack Labosky got a game-ending double play to seal the win for the Blue Devils (15-3, 3-1 ACC).
The hosts took a first-inning lead on an RBI single from Griffin Conine off Miami lefthander Jeb Bargfeldt.
Two innings later, the Hurricanes (8-9, 2-2 ACC) took advantage of one of three Duke errors on the night to plate the tying run.
With freshmen Raymond Gil and Willy Escala on first and second, an attempted double steal worked, despite a swinging strikeout from freshman Tony Jenkins.
In an effort to nab Gil, the throw from Duke catcher Chris Proctor hit off the glove of Blue Devils shortstop Zack Kone and rolled into shallow center, allowing Escala plenty of time to tie the game, 1-1.
Miami went ahead in the fourth on an RBI single from junior Romy Gonzalez.
With senior Hunter Tackett on third after a leadoff triple to open the inning, Gonzalez cracked the first pitch he saw from Duke righthander Adam Laskey back up the middle for a 2-1 lead.
Laskey (4-1) struck out six batters and scattered six hits in 6.0+ innings.
The Blue Devils tied the game in the home half of the fourth on an RBI groundout from Mike Rothenberg that scored Conine from third.
Bargfeldt (2-2) allowed four earned runs in six innings. It was the fourth straight start the team captain went at least six innings for Miami.
Junior Frankie Bartow tossed two scoreless innings of relief, but the Hurricanes could not find the tying run late.
The Hurricanes will look to even the series Saturday in Game 2 at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. First pitch for the contest, slated for broadcast on ACC Network Extra and WVUM 90.5 FM, is set for 1 p.m.