Two hours into the game Wednesday night between 15th-ranked Miami and the host FAU Owls, 16 runs had been scored, 16 hits had been pounded, 12 runners had reached through walks and the game was still undecided — after only four innings.
Three hours into the game, the teams had combined for 19 hits and 14 walks, with 16 left on base — and the score still was 8-8 as the fans began singing Take Me Out to the Ballgame in the seventh-inning stretch.
Finally, after four hours, UM broke it open for two runs on four hits in the ninth to defeat the Owls 10-9.
Ricky Eusebio sliced his career-high third hit, stole second and scored on a Tyler Palmer single to make it 9-8 for the Hurricanes. Palmer scored on Garrett Kennedy’s single for UM’s final run.
In the bottom of the ninth, FAU made Miami sweat before the victory. Mitch Morales singled off Bryan Garcia and was replaced by pinch-runner Robert Buckley, who reached second on a fielder’s choice and came home on a wild pitch.
The Owls’ Kevin Alexander then walked, but Jose Bonilla Traverso struck out to end the game.
The Canes (29-13) have won 16 of their past 17 games. FAU fell to 21-19.
In all, UM stranded 13 runners and FAU stranded nine. There were 27 combined hits and four FAU errors — with a combined 14 pitchers used.
Garcia (5-2) earned the victory, with Kevin Alexander (3-1) taking the loss.
“It was a great game,” UM coach Jim Morris said. “It went back and forth, and both teams battled very hard. Fortunately, we got a couple of runs late.
“Ricky Eusebio had a huge hit … a huge night. It was definitely a high-energy game, but anytime you get 10 runs, you have to win.’’
The game could have been decided far earlier:
The Canes and Owls combined for 10 runs in the fourth — seven by UM.
UM starting pitcher Javi Salas, who allowed four earned runs in three innings, appeared to injure his left knee when he attempted to tag out Kerr in the third inning.
In the 2014-15 season, the University of Miami men’s basketball team will host three Atlantic Coast Conference opponents that finished in the Top 25 in 2014, including league newcomer No. 9 Louisville, reigning ACC champion No. 10 Virginia and No. 21 North Carolina, the conference announced.
The Canes will have a home-and-home series with Louisville, Florida State, Virginia Tech and Boston College in 2014-15 and will play host to Virginia, North Carolina, Clemson, N.C. State and Georgia Tech at the BankUnited Center as part of an impressive ACC schedule. UM will hit the road for matchups at Duke, Syracuse, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame and Wake Forest.
Specific game dates, times and networks have not yet been determined.