The University of Miami smacked 12 hits for eight runs in one inning last Sunday against Rutgers – and 53 hits for 48 runs in the four-game sweep.
On Wednesday at FAU, it took two-and-a-half hours for the Hurricanes to get on the scoreboard. And although UM freshman Carl Chester boomed one over the left-field fence to make it 3-3 in the eighth, it wasn’t enough to overcome sloppy Miami play and strong FAU pitching.
The Owls staged an eighth-inning rally to regain the lead, holding on in the ninth to defeat the Hurricanes 5-3.
“They played better than we did,” said UM coach Jim Morris. “We made too many mistakes mentally and physically. We didn’t play well enough to win. Just frustrating.”
UM scored twice in the seventh, but bad luck — or according to Morris and base-runner George Iskenderian, bad base-running – befell the Canes with two outs and runners on first and second.
Garrett Kennedy ripped what would have been a likely RBI through the hole on the right side, but the ball hit Iskenderian as he sprinted toward second base, ending the inning and a chance for UM to tie it.
“You can’t get hit, bottom line,” Morris said. “You’ve got to get out of the way. At that point it’s the tying run and later we would have gone ahead instead of being behind.”
Iskenderian called it “maybe just a little bit of a lack of concentration. I saw the ball the whole way. I should have jumped earlier or stepped on the brakes. That can’t happen. There’s no excuse for it. That’s potentially the winning run. The ball is hit in the hole and you’ve got to force him to make a tough play.”
The Hurricanes tied it up the next inning on “a fast ball up and in,” Chester said. “I just got around on it and put a good swing on it. It was amazing. But not a good game.”
UM (4-1) stranded 12 runners and committed two errors.
The Owls (4-0) scored a pair of runs in the first inning and another in the second to take a 3-0 lead.
Brett Lashley and Brendon Sanger had back-to-back singles to set up runners on first and third. When UM pitcher Derik Beauprez caught Sanger in a pickle at first, Lashley beat the subsequent relay throw home from Edgar Michelangeli to make it 1-0.
Ricky Santiago, a senior out of Pembroke Pines Flanagan High, singled to center to score Sanger for a 2-0 FAU lead.
A balk by Beauprez brought home Esteban Puerta (single) of Cooper City to make it 3-0.
Cooper Hammond was charged with the loss after surrendering three hits and two runs in 1.1 innings.
Left-handed senior Bo Logan worked two innings for the win.
Canes right-handed sophomore Beauprez, who came into the game with a victory in relief last Friday against Rutgers, allowed the three earned runs. He lasted two innings before being replaced by Danny Garcia.
Garcia and Ryan Otero combined for three scoreless innings before sidewinder Hammond came in.
The Canes next meet sixth-ranked Florida (4-0) for a three-game weekend series beginning Friday in Gainesville.
“We’ll harp on this for maybe 30 minutes and then we’ve got a game Friday,” Iskenderian said. “It’s on to the next.”