Miami Comes Up Short Against Texas
CORAL GABLES, Fla. — The top-seeded University of Miami baseball team fell to the second-seeded Texas Longhorns, 4-1, Saturday evening at Mark Light Field.
“Well, it was a tough one, obviously,” Miami head coach Gino DiMare said. “The pitcher, I thought, obviously threw very well for Texas. We had our chances early. Turns out, that was a big part of the game. They scored early, we didn’t get the big hits with the bases load. And we had our guys up, we had the right guys up. But, I thought Rafe [Schlesinger] here next to me threw outstanding. I mean, just shut them down, gave us a chance. And, of course, Dom [Pitelli] had an outstanding game. I thought we played really good defensively, for the most part. We had a couple hiccups there throwing the ball away from the outfield. But, at the end of the day, it was a really good pitcher—he seemed to be on his game and he got the better of us tonight. That’s the bottom line, but we’ve got to turn the page and be ready to play tomorrow, which our team has done all year long and I don’t expect anything different starting now.”
Despite a 2 ½ hour weather delay, Texas starter Lebarron Johnson Jr. wasn’t fazed.
Johnson Jr. (8-3) tossed a 129-pitch complete game, holding the Hurricanes (41-20) to one run on seven hits. The redshirt sophomore struck out eight batters, putting the Longhorns (40-20) one win away from a Super Regional berth.
Texas backed Johnson Jr. from the jump, totaling four runs across the first three innings.
Junior right fielder Dylan Campbell crushed a two-run homer off of Miami starter Karson Ligon (3-2) to kickstart the scoring.
Second baseman Jack O’Dowd socked a solo shot to extend the Longhorns’ lead to three before freshman designated hitter Jalin Flores plated a run in the third to make it 4-0.
Miami shortstop Dominic Pitelli supplied the lone tally for the Hurricanes, as the junior launch his 12th round-tripper of the year.
Sophomore southpaw Rafe Schlesinger shined out of the bullpen, tossing a career-best seven shutout innings. Schlesinger notched a career-best nine strikeouts in relief of Ligon.
With the loss, Miami will meet No. 3 seed Louisiana in an elimination game Sunday. First pitch is set for 12 p.m. at Mark Light Field.