Miami Tops No. 17 Virginia Tech on Morales' Walk-Off Knock
CORAL GABLES, Fla. — The Cardiac Canes did it again.
On Saint Patrick’s Day, the Hurricanes used a little bit of Mark Light Magic.
Junior third baseman Yohandy Morales delivered a walk-off double in the bottom of the ninth, lifting Miami to a 4-3 victory over the 17th-ranked Virginia Tech Hokies Friday evening.
“I told Zach [Levenson] in the dugout, ‘Don’t even get your things. You’re not coming up to bat,’” Morales said.
With the Hurricanes (12-6, 3-1 ACC) and Hokies (12-5, 1-3) deadlocked in the ninth, Miami didn’t lean on the luck of the Irish.
But rather the Hurricanes’ Pied Piper.
After sophomore Edgardo Villegas was hit by a pitch, Morales ripped an opposite-field rocket into the right-center field gap.
Villegas flew around the bases and slid across home plate, sending Mark Light Field into a frenzy.
The Hurricanes poured out of the first-base dugout and chased Morales into left, dumping coolers full of water in celebration of their second walk-off win of the season.
“It’s a top-two moment in my baseball career,” Morales said. “We’re a family. We stick together and we have each other’s backs. It was an amazing experience to come through for our team.”
The duo teamed up to pitch the final 3 1/3 innings, holding the Hokies hitless.
Scinta tossed 2 1/3 frames, striking out four of the eight batters he faced, while Lequerica recorded a scoreless ninth en route to his second straight victory.
“We got heart,” Scinta said. “We want to make it to Omaha. We’re coming together as a team and as a family.”
Virginia Tech left-hander Henry Weycker was tagged with the loss after surrendering the game-winning hit to Morales.
Following their fourth victory in their last five games, the Hurricanes will look to pick up their second consecutive top-25 series win.
Miami and Virginia Tech are scheduled to wrap up the three-game set Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m.
“Yoyo had the biggest hit of the year so far,” Miami head coach Gino DiMare said. “We haven’t gotten that big two-out hit before that. We had a lot of opportunities in the game, but just couldn’t get it done. As long as he stays consistent with his approach, he’s going to do a lot of good things.”