Jim Larranaga wore a huge smile after his Hurricanes handled the N.C. State Wolfpack during Saturday’s 85-70 win.
“Quite frankly, our guys just executed the game plan perfectly,” Miami’s proud coach said.
Five Canes scored 14 points or more in Miami’s best shooting performance of the season. Senior Rion Brown led with 20 as the team shot nearly 59 percent from the field.
Miami took a 37-36 lead into halftime in Raleigh, N.C., after Davon Reed beat the buzzer with a wide-open 3-pointer.
Sophomore Tonye Jekiri, the Hurricanes’ 7-foot center, notched his first career double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds.
In the second half, the Canes withstood an attack from N.C. State’s T.J. Warren.
The ACC’s leading scorer at 24 points per game, Warren kept the Wolfpack alive by forcing Miami into turnovers with a strong full-court press. He scored 20 points and had three steals.
The Hurricanes (15-14, 6-10 ACC), however, put together a 13-0 run late in the game to secure their important road win.
Next up for Miami is a matchup with Clemson at 8 p.m. Tuesday, followed by Wake Forest on Saturday.
Miami shines at ACC Indoors
The UM track and field program put on a strong performance at the 2014 ACC Indoor Championships in Clemson, S.C.
Artie Burns, Amber Monroe, Isaiah Simmons, Shakima Wimbley and Lea Johnson all won individual events this weekend, as did the women’s 4×400 relay team.
Wimbley scorched the competition in the 200m final, earning first place with her 23.58-second time.
Burns, meanwhile, narrowly won the men’s 60m hurdle event. He posted a time of 7.74 seconds, just .05 seconds better than the silver medalist from Virginia.
“It feels great to come in fresh from high school and do this,” Burns said. “It’s big for my confidence going into nationals.”
In the field events, Miami was equally impressive. The Canes won men’s and women’s shot put to wrap up a tremendous weekend.
FSU takes baseball series over UM
Miami got off to a good start in its weekend battle with Florida State, but the Seminoles came out on top.
The Canes dealt No. 2 FSU its first loss of the season with a 3-1 win to open the series on Friday.
Junior Chris Diaz earned his third victory in as many starts, keeping the Seminoles at bay for seven innings at Tallahassee’s Dick Howser Stadium.
“He’s one of those guys who goes right after people,” coach Jim Morris said. “He’s got good sink, gets a lot of ground balls. If you play good defense behind him, you have a good chance to win. I thought he had guys off-balance all night. He pitched extremely well.”
A combination of timely hitting and smart base-running was enough to plate three runs and lift the No. 14 Hurricanes over FSU.
Freshman Bryan Garcia pitched the final two innings and got his third save.
On Saturday, the Seminoles immediately turned the tables.
While Miami jumped out to a 1-0 lead on Alex Hernandez’s RBI single in the first inning, Florida State was all over Bryan Radziewski during his brief stint on the mound.
Miami’s junior ace struggled through 4.1 innings, and coughed up four runs in the bottom of the first to quell any momentum the Canes were building.
Radziewski loaded the bases with no outs when he walked the first three batters he faced. Then, a two-out double followed by a clutch single quickly blew the game open.
The Hurricanes struggled with their command, after Radziewski was relieved by Cooper Hammond in the fifth.
“If you walk nine guys against a team as talented as Florida State, you’re not going to win,” Morris said. “I thought it was a tight strike zone. Their pitchers threw strikes, made us swing the bat, and we didn’t.”
The series tipped in the Seminoles’ favor on Sunday. FSU crushed AJ Salcines during his relief appearance, totaling seven runs in the sixth inning to once again put Miami out of contention.
Despite an early five-run deficit, the Canes had battled back to tie it at 6-6. Zack Collins homered during the attempted comeback, but Miami fell 13-6.
After the two losses, Miami sits at 5-5 while Florida State is 8-1. Due to changed rules to accommodate the recent ACC expansion, this series was not a conference matchup.