No. 1 Miami Slips Past No. 16 Virginia, 4-3 in 10 Innings
<?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
CORAL GABLES, Fla. Miami’s Jemile Weeks scored on a Virginia error in the 10th inning as the top-ranked Hurricanes pulled out a 4-3 win Saturday night in front of a capacity crowd at Mark Light Field. Virginia had rallied from a 3-0 deficit to send the game into extra frames before the Canes notched the win in the 10th.
Matt Packer (So., Germantown, Tenn.) was credited with the loss and fell to 5-2 after pitching three-plus innings of relief. He allowed one unearned run, two hits and two walks and struck out three. Miami’s Carlos Gutierrez (3-1) nabbed the win after pitching a scoreless 10th inning.
Virginia starting pitcher Jacob Thompson (Jr., Danville, Va.) bounced back from a slow start to pitch six strong innings. He allowed three runs (two earned), three hits and four walks and struck out five. He finished extremely well by retiring 11 of the final 12 batters he faced, including nine in a row at one point. Virginia pitchers held Miami to just five hits, tying a season low for the Hurricanes.
After six-consecutive wins, Miami starting pitcher Eric Erickson earned his first no-decision of 2007 after going five innings and allowing two earned runs, two hits and two walks with five strikeouts.
Jeremy Farrell (Jr., Westlake, Ohio) homered to lead the Virginia offense, which finished with five hits. The one-run loss marked the Cavaliers’ seventh defeat of two runs or fewer in ACC play.
Miami (35-5, 19-2 ACC) jumped on Virginia for two runs in the first inning on a two-run home run by Yonder Alonso to center field. The Hurricanes then tacked on an unearned run in the third inning when Alonso scored on a UVa passed ball.
Virginia (32-14, 13-10) got its first hit and run at the same time in the fifth inning, as Farrell launched a 3-1 Erickson pitch into the palm trees well beyond the left-center field fence for a solo home run. The long ball was Farrell’s team-high eighth of the season.
The Cavaliers added another run in the fifth, as John Barr (Fr., Ivyland, Pa.) walked, advanced on a Franco Valdes (So., Miami, Fla.) sacrifice bunt, moved to third on a groundout and scored on a Jarrett Parker (Fr., Stafford, Va.) single to center field.
Virginia tied the game in the sixth inning. David Adams (Jr., Margate, Fla.) walked with one out, then stole second and moved to third on a throwing error by catcher Jason Hagerty. He scored on a sacrifice fly by Dan Grovatt (Fr., Tabernacle, N.J.).
The teams then played three scoreless innings, with Virginia snuffing out a big Miami threat in the ninth inning when Tyler Cannon (So., Pigeon Forge, Tenn.) made a diving stop of a sharp Blake Tekotte grounder with two out to force extra innings.
Weeks then led off the 10th with a double to right field and Alonso was intentionally walked. Michael Schwimer (Sr., Alexandria, Va.) relieved Packer, and both runners moved up on a passed ball. Schwimer then induced Mark Sobolewski to hit a ground ball with the infield drawn in, but the throw sailed high and allowed Weeks to score the winning run.
The teams play the finale of the series at noon Sunday. The game will be televised regionally by CSS.