Canes blank FGCU 6-0 for season sweep

Jordan Lala hit a home run to lead off the bottom of the first inning against Florida Gulf Coast University on April 27 at Mark Light Field.
Jordan Lala hit a home run to lead off the bottom of the first inning against Florida Gulf Coast University on April 27 at Mark Light Field. Photo credit: Alex Carnochan

After a disappointing 2-1 series loss to North Carolina this past weekend, the Miami Hurricanes did something they have only done twice before this season.

Against Florida Gulf Coast University on Wednesday night, with six different pitchers taking the mound, the Canes did not give up a single run.

The 6-0 win at Mark Light Field gave Miami a season sweep of the Eagles, as the Canes defeated them for the third time this season in the team’s second to last mid-week game of the season.

“Midweeks are tough. If you look around the country, teams at times are having a tough time and we had our share a few years back, but we’ve done a pretty good job and it starts on the mound,” Miami head coach Gino DiMare said.

Miami started Jake Smith, who collected his first win as a Hurricane. The second-year sophomore pitched three innings while giving up one hit and striking out one with ten batters faced.

“I felt great,” Smith said. “This is my second start and I knew going into it that it was only going to be two or three innings, so it felt good to do what I was supposed to do.”

Victor Mederos pitched in relief of starter Jake Smith. It was the freshman's first time pitching since April 10 when he started against Pittsburgh.
Victor Mederos pitched in relief of starter Jake Smith. It was the freshman's first time pitching since April 10 when he started against Pittsburgh. Photo credit: Alex Carnochan

Freshman Victor Mederos took over pitching duties in the top of the fourth inning, giving up two hits with seven batters faced. Mederos had not pitched since April 10 against Pittsburgh, where he gave up four runs in the start.

“I thought he had some balls that he left up a little bit. I thought he threw okay,” DiMare said. “Having said that, he hasn’t thrown in a while. Coming into the game live for the first time in quite some time I think is not easy, so he was definitely not as polished as he would normally be, but we needed to get his feet wet and get him going.”

DiMare said they would like to have Mederos in a position in the bullpen so they can go to him on a regular basis.

On the offensive end, leadoff hitter Jordan Lala improved his hitting streak to eight games and scored the first run of the game for Miami with a home run in the first at-bat of the game. The deep ball was Lala’s fourth of the season.

“I know my job is to get on base,” Lala said. “I wasn’t trying to do too much, usually lefties I look middle away and he made a mistake and threw me one up and in and I just turned on it.”

Jordan Lala attempts to evade a tag by FGCU's catcher after a drop third strike out to end the bottom of the second inning.
Jordan Lala attempts to evade a tag by FGCU's catcher after a drop third strike out to end the bottom of the second inning. Photo credit: Alex Carnochan

The Canes scored two more runs in the bottom of the first inning off FGCU starting pitcher Gus Carter. Adrian Del Castillo drove in Yohandy Morales on a double to left field after Morales hustled to a double of his own. Raymond Gil then singled to left field to drive in Del Castillo.

In the bottom of the third, Christian Del Castillo drove in his brother Adrian on a single to right-center field to advance the lead to 4-0.

Carter was removed after the fifth inning and finished the game giving up eight hits and four runs while striking out five. Against relief pitcher Tyler Shuck, catcher Carlos Perez drove in Christian Del Castillo on a single up the third base line, allowing Gil to advance to third and eventually cross home plate on a wild pitch.

After Mederos, the Canes used relief pitchers Spencer Bodanza, Anthony Arguelles, Alex McFarlane and Andrew Walters for one inning each. All four pitchers did not give up a single hit.