After a 7-4 loss against the unranked Pittsburgh [Pitt] Panthers on Saturday, Miami baseball bounced back on Mother’s Day, winning 5-4 to secure the series at Charles L. Cost Field.
In the first inning, No. 11 Miami (34-17, 16-11 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC)) started off strong, as it cashed in on a run in the first inning with the bases loaded. Pitt (22-27, 10-15 ACC) was quick to answer with two runs in the bottom of the first to give the home team the advantage early on.
Panthers pitcher Kyle Mosely was dominant, recording seven strikeouts through 4.1 innings. He was unable to silence third baseman Yohandy Morales, who batted speedy center fielder Jacoby Long in for a run to tie the game. Miami native Matthew Fernandez got a call from Pitt’s bullpen to try to rescue the inning as Morales and Kayfus occupied second and third with one out in the top of the fifth.
The top of the fifth did not end there, as outfielder Zach Levenson loaded the bases on a walk and second baseman Blake Cyr followed up with a powerful ground-rule double to give the ‘Canes a short-lived 4-2 lead.
Pitt counter-punched Miami’s three-run inning in the bottom of the sixth. Outfielder Kyle Hess put the Panthers in a great position to score by connecting on a triple to get the Pitt offense started. The Panthers scored two runs to tie the game, but almost as if it were a boxing match, Miami struck back.
Cyr and shortstop Dominic Pitelli recorded back-to-back singles. On the next at-bat, catcher Carlos Perez got hit by a pitch, loading the bases for the fourth time in the game. Pinch hitter Dorian Gonzalez hit a sac fly, which gave the Hurricanes a 5-4 lead in the top of the seventh.
The Hurricanes’ infield had a remarkable offensive performance, with Cyr, Morales and Kayfus all getting on base at least three times.
Pitcher Andrew Walters also starred with a dominant pitching performance. The MLB prospect pitched 2.2 innings and struck out four batters while only allowing one hit.
Next up, the ‘Canes play their non-conference finale against Florida International on Tuesday before starting a series against Duke on Thursday at Mark Light Field in hopes of attaining a better seeding before the ACC Baseball Championship starts on May 23. The tournament will take place in Durham, North Carolina.