Miami Dominates Towson in Game One of Doubleheader
CORAL GABLES, Fla. — The Miami Hurricanes baseball team cruised past the Towson Tigers, 11-2, Saturday afternoon in the first leg of the doubleheader at Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field.
Miami (2-0) third-year left-handed pitcher Carson Palmquist, who finished third in the nation with 14 saves a year ago, made the transition into the rotation look smooth. Palmquist fanned a career-high seven batters across a career-best five innings, allowing only one hit.
“It starts with the pitching. Carson did really well,” Miami head coach Gino DiMare said. “His fastball just has a different look. This whole thing with spin rates and his angle from which he’s throwing the ball, and how it comes out, you see a lot of guys swing at pitches that might not be strikes. He’s a tough guy to hit and when you can throw different pitches, it makes it very difficult.”
While Palmquist dominated on the bump, Miami’s lineup backed the Hurricanes’ starter from the get-go.
In the second inning, freshman Dorian Gonzalez Jr. launched a no-doubt 406-foot rocket over the right field fence to put the Hurricanes on the scoreboard.
One frame later, speedster Jacoby Long showcased his wheels beating out a one-out infield single. Long proceeded to swipe second, setting up a prime opportunity for leadoff man CJ Kayfus.
Kayfus roped a double into right field, chasing home Long and doubling the Hurricanes’ advantage.
Two batters later, third baseman Yohandy Morales traded places with Kayfus with a two-bagger of his own.
With the Hurricanes up, 3-0, Palmquist continued to breeze through the Tigers.
Palmquist got through the first four frames without surrendering a hit before Towson catcher Burke Camper smacked his first homer of the season in the fifth.
Towson (0-2) cashed in for another run in the sixth on Bryce Federick’s sacrifice fly, cutting the deficit, 3-2.
Then, Miami’s offense came to life.
The Hurricanes scored eight runs over their final three trips to the plate, highlighted by a four-spot in the seventh inning.
“At the end, offensively, we finished the game,” DiMare said. “We hit better with runners in scoring position and had a lot of runs with two outs, which is something that is important with winning teams.”
Freshman Lorenzo Carrier blasted a 2-run shot in the sixth, the first of his collegiate career.
In the seventh, the Hurricanes started a two-out rally. Four straight Hurricanes reached base, resulting in a quartet of runs.
With Kayfus, who led off the inning with a double, aboard at second, junior catcher Maxwell Romero Jr. drew a walk to put a couple runners on base.
Outfielder Jacob Burke followed with a line drive single into left, plating Kayfus and extending Miami’s lead to 5-2.
Three pitches later, Gonzalez cleared the bases with a two RBI double, setting the stage for Carrier once again. Carrier doubled to right, ballooning the Hurricanes’ advantage to seven.
Second-year freshman Zach Levenson capped off the scoring in the eighth. In his first at-bat as Hurricane. Levenson hit a 430-foot tank that cleared the left field scoreboard.
Overall, Miami totaled eight extra-base hits, including five doubles and three homers.
The Hurricanes scored six of their 11 runs with two outs.
Miami and Towson are scheduled to play the night cap of the doubleheader at 7 p.m.
“All in all, I thought this was a better performance,” DiMare said. “Being in a doubleheader, we got to be ready to play here in a little bit.”