CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Bryan Radziewski and the Miami Hurricanes sealed their second ACC title in school history with a 2-0 shutout against the University of North Carolina Saturday afternoon.
“B-Rad” fanned six Tar Heels in six innings, while only permitting one walk. Despite a shaky start to the season (0-2), he finished strongly with a 7-2 record and nearly a 100 strikeouts.
Sophomore infielder David Thompson drove in and scored the only two runs of the afternoon after going hitless in an 11-2 loss the night before.
He provided the Canes with an early lead in the first inning after driving in right fielder Willie Abreu after back-to-back singles by both underclassmen.
Thompson’s scored run came in the fourth inning when third baseman Johnny Ruiz hit a sacrifice fly to register the second run – and a little more cushion for the championship-hungry squad.
In the ninth, just as it has been done all season, another victory was captured by a hitless save from freshman sandman Bryan Garcia, who procured his 15th save of the season with one and a third innings pitched.
Overall, Miami went 27-3 (19-2 in ACC play) in its last 30 games after struggling with a near .500 record in the early months of the season. This outburst was ignited by key freshman settling into their roles, such as slugger Zack Collins (8 HR, .520 slg.%), Outlaw-member Willie Abreu (.299 avg., 58 H), and Garcia.
In addition, senior leaders Tyler Palmer and Dale “D.K.” Carey finished the year numbers one and two for the team in hitting – Palmer being the only member to float above .300 in batting average.
With their best regular season since 2008 on their resume now, the Hurricanes look forward to the ACC postseason tournament, where they have the privilege of enjoying the top seed.
“When we get [only]two wins in a weekend, we want the third. We have to stay hungry,” Palmer said. “This is not the first time the program has won an ACC Regular Season Championship. There’s history in this program…we want to make it back to Omaha.”