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No. 5 NC State Rallies Late to Defeat Canes, 6-4

No. 5 NC State Rallies Late to Defeat Canes, 6-4

CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The Miami Hurricanes were two outs away from a victory over No. 5 NC State on Sunday, but the Wolfpack put up four runs to steal a victory, 6-4.
The Canes (15-9, 3-6 ACC) took a 4-2 lead in the bottom of the eighth and went into the final inning with momentum after scoring two runs in what looked like their final at-bat of the day. But NC State (23-1, 8-1 ACC) refused to give up without a fight and the Canes made three errors in the top of the ninth to give the Wolfpack a chance.
“We didn’t do anything right,” head coach Gino DiMare said. “You’ve got to make plays at the end and we didn’t make any plays. They’re a good team and it’s not over. We got the leadoff hitter out, which was huge, but they kept coming. It’s disappointing.”
The comeback began with one out in the ninth, as David Vazquez reached on an error by shortstop Freddy Zamora. Pinch hitter Lawton McArthur followed with a double to center and Vazquez scored when Jordan Lala fell down in center field trying to play the ball. 
Luca Tresh followed with a pinch-hit single to left that gave NC State runners at the corners and the Wolfpack tied the game at four when Jonny Butler blooped a single to right that drove home McArthur.
Another error by Miami allowed NC State to take a 5-4 lead, as Raymond Gil could not handle a ground ball hit to third by Will Wilson and pinch runner J.T. Jarrett scored from second. Reliever Daniel Federman walked Patrick Bailey to load the bases with one out before being removed in favor of Gregory Veliz.
“They swung the bat and we gave up some hits,” DiMare said. “We misplayed a ball in center field and let the guy get to second. We are slipping and falling all over the place. They hit a weak ground ball to third base and we can’t handle it and it ricochets off the shortstop. We had a play in the hole where we’ve got him out and the throw gets short hopped. It’s a tough pick and we couldn’t pick it.”
Miami’s top reliever struck out Evan Edwards, but walked in a run when he issued a free pass to Tyler McDonough that gave NC State a two-run lead.
Despite the major swing in momentum, Miami opened the bottom of the ninth with a leadoff walk by Jordan Lala that put the tying run at the plate against right-hander Michael Bienlien. The Wolfpack benefitted from a Zamora check swing that turned into a 5-4-3 double play and Adrian Del Castillo struck out to end the game and series.
NC State had three hits off Miami starter Brian Van Belle n the top of the first, taking a 1-0 lead when Bailey hit an RBI single to center that drove home Butler. The redshirt junior settled down after the rocky first inning, allowing just two runs on seven hits over six innings, while striking out seven and walking just one. 
After allowing a run in the first, Van Belle threw four scoreless frames before surrendering a two-out double off the wall in left-center to Brad Debo that drove home Tyler McDonough and put NC State back on top, 2-1.
“Van Belle threw excellent, especially on a day like today where the ball is blowing out and they’ve got some guys who can lift the ball and get it out of the park,” DiMare said. “He threw good and settled in.” 
Miami tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the second, as Gil and Anthony Vilar singled before Michael Amditis ripped an RBI single to left that sent Gil home.
In the seventh, Miami knotted the game at 2 with a sacrifice fly to left by Zamora. The junior drove home Gabe Rivera, who led off the inning with a pinch-hit double off the wall in right-center.
The Canes took the lead of the day in the eighth, as Vilar singled up the middle to drive Gil home and put Miami ahead, 3-2. Gil, who was 3-for-4 on the day, opened the inning with a double to right and scored easily on Vilar’s one-out base hit. 
After Amditis doubled to left, Miami added another run when JP Gates hit a sacrifice fly to right that sent home Vilar from third and gave the Hurricanes a two-run lead. 
“In the bottom of the eighth we got it going, but we still made some mistakes throughout the game in terms of moving guys over,” DiMare said. “We’ve got to do a better job of bunting and better job of situational hitting, but at the end of the day you’re going into the ninth and you’re up, 4-2. You’ve got to win the game.”