UM Defeats FIU; Evens Series

Homestead, Fla. ( - The Miami Hurricanes (6-4) evened up the season series with cross-town rival FIU (8-2) with a 6-2 victory in front of a Homestead Challenge record 3,904 fans Friday night at the Homestead Sports Complex.

UM starter Troy Roberson (1-0) earned the victory going 5.0 innings allowing three hits, two earned runs, three walks and career-high eight strikeouts. Roberson also threw a career-best 92 pitches. Along with Shawn Valdes-Fauli and George Huguet, UM shut pitching shut out FIU over the final 5.0 innings. FIU scored both runs in the fourth inning. UM struck out FIU a season-high 12 times in the game. Valdes-Fauli and Huguet each threw 2.0 scoreless innings.

The Hurricanes opened the scoring in the first, 1-0, when Javy Rodriguez stole home for the game's first score. Rodriguez reached on a single to left field, followed by stealing second and third. Coincidentally, in last season's second game against FIU at the Homestead Challenge Rodriguez led off the scoring with a steal at home after single and steals around the bases.

FIU took the lead, 2-1, in the top of the fourth on Skip Adams double deep to left field that scored Bernard Gonzalez and Dean Adams. Gonzalez reached on a walk and took second on a ground out by Tommy Duenas. Dean Adams took first as he was hit by a Roberson pitch.

Miami regained the lead, 4-2, in the bottom of the fourth scoring three runs on three hits and one error. Danny Matienzo led off with a single to right field. Kevin Mannix then reached on a fielding error by the third baseman, moving Matienzo to second. Matt Dryer moved both runners over with a sacrifice bunt. Jim Burt then brought both runners home with a double off the top of the fence in left field. Burt later came in on a double down the left field line by Hass Pratt.

Matienzo added another run, 5-2, in the fifth with a solo home run to centerfield off Banks. After Mannix singled in the next at bat Banks was replaced with reliever Carlos Sanchez. Banks went 4.1 innings with six hits, five runs (three earned), two walks and five strikeouts. The Matienzo home run was his sixth of the season and the fourth straight game with home run, one shy of Phil Lane's school record.

In the seventh, UM added to its lead, 6-2, scoring once when Sanchez overthrew first base on a Dryer bunt attempt allowing pinch runner Paco Figueroa to score from second. Matienzo led off with a single to centerfield and was replaced with Figueroa at first. He moved to second on a passed ball.

The Hurricanes continue play in the Homestead Challenge Saturday night at 7 p.m. against Kansas State (3-1) at the Homestead Sports Complex.

Miami moves to 82-19 all-time vs. the Golden Panthers, including a 4-0 mark in Homestead Challenge games. With a Homestead Challenge high 3,904 in attendance the top five paid attendance games at the Homestead Sports Complex have been between these two programs. UM is 11-1 at the Homestead Challenge since 1998.

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