Hurricanes Take Series from Yellow Jackets

The Hurricanes went into their weekend series against Georgia Tech with a chance to knock the Yellow Jackets completely out of the postseason picture. They may not have done that, as they let GT escape with a win in the series finale, but they did accomplish what they came to do, getting the series win on the road.

Thursday night, in the series opener, Miami got what might be their most improbable win of the season.

The Canes got very little out of starter Eric Erickson thanks to a lengthy rain delay and Georgia Tech was able to score three runs off of Vince Kossak, the reliever asked to bridge the gap to the late innings.

Making matters worse, the Miami offense couldn't really get anything going. They had only managed one run going into the eighth inning.

But, then things turned around. The Hurricanes got a single tally in the eighth on Stephen Perez's fifth home run of the season.

You couldn't help but feel like that's as close as Miami was going to get, though. Tony Cruz, GT's almost unhittable closer that was brought in to finish off the eighth, was coming back out for the ninth. But the runs just kept coming. Thanks to some timely hitting, some free passes and some shoddy defense, the Canes put up three runs and a took a 5-4 lead that they wouldn't relinquish. The combination of a struggling offense and good pitching has kept Miami from being involved in very many high-scoring affairs, but that's exactly what they found themselves involved in on Friday night.

The Hurricanes had seven runs on the board by the end of the fourth inning. Considering how good their pitching has been this season, you would have expected that to be much more than enough to get a comfortable win.

But that wasn't the case on this day. Thanks to some poor defensive play and the Yellow Jackets getting to UM starter Steven Ewing, the score was 7-6 after five full innings.

That's as close as GT got, however. Four Miami relievers combined to throw five scoreless innings to close out the team's 8-6 win. Michael Broad and Chantz Mack were the stars of the game for Miami. Both players went 3-for-5 and between the two of them, they drove in five of the eight Miami runs.

The series finale on Saturday was the one the Hurricanes let get away.

Both teams got good pitching performances from their starters. Miami's Eric Whaley threw six innings, scattering nine hits, giving up two earned runs. He struck out seven and only walked two.

Georgia Tech's Cole Pitts was even better. He pitched seven innings, giving up two hits and one earned run, walking one and striking out five. The deciding run scored when Whaley gave up his second home run of the day, this time to Daniel Palka leading off the sixth inning.

Just like that, folks, the regular season is over. The Hurricanes finish up at 34-19 overall and 16-14 in ACC play. They will head into the ACC tournament this week seeded sixth. They will begin play on Wednesday afternoon at 3 PM against North Carolina State.

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