March 2, 2009

Courtesy of Miami

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - The 10th-ranked University of Miami baseball team finished off a sweep of No. 12 Florida with a dominant 16-2 win Sunday afternoon in front of 3,038 fans at McKethan Stadium. The three-game sweep for Miami was the program's first against Florida in the regular season since the 2001 season.

Miami (6-1) pounded out 20 hits en route to the victory - the team's highest single game hit total since recording 26 hits against Virginia on April 24, 2004. The Hurricanes out-scored Florida (5-3) in the three-game set, 24-to-8, after winning the first two games of the series, 8-5 and 2-1.

Four Hurricanes finished the game with at least three hits, with senior Dave DiNatale leading the way with a 4-for-6, three-RBI, three-run performance. Junior Chris Herrmann also drove in three and scored three, finishing 3-for-4 on the afternoon. Sophomore Yasmani Grandal went 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored while junior Scott Lawson - recording a rare seven at-bats in a nine inning contest - finished with three hits, a RBI and a run scored.

Sophomore starter Iden Nazario (2-0) earned his second win in as many starts, allowing two runs on just two hits while walking five and striking out seven. Freshman Travis Miller relieved Nazario and tossed three scoreless before senior Jason Santana came on in the ninth to retire the Gators in order. Nazario, Miller and Santana combined to allow just four UF hits, the lowest total for a UM opponent since limiting Virginia Tech to just four hits on May 10 of last season.

UM's last regular season sweep of Florida came when UM won one game in Gainesville and two in Coral Gables in 2001.

The Hurricanes opened the scoring in third with their biggest inning of the season, scoring a total of seven runs with 12 `Canes coming to the plate in the inning. Harold Martinez led off the inning with his first career homer before eight of the next 10 UM batters reached base. In total, the inning saw four hits, three walks, a hit-by-pitch, a UF error and two RBI groundouts.

After Miami added another run in the fifth, Chris Herrmann joined Martinez in hitting his first career homer with a two-run blast to left in the sixth before three straight singles from Grandal, Weislow and Melendres produced Miami's 12th run.

After Florida plated two runs in the sixth, Miami scored one in the seventh and three more in the eighth to close the scoring at 16-2.

Nick Maronde suffered the loss for the Gators, allowing four earned runs in 3 2/3 innings of work.

Miami returns to Coral Gables this week to play a pair of mid-week games at Alex Rodriguez Park before hosting NC State, March 6-8, for both team's ACC opener. Prior to series against the Wolfpack, the Hurricanes will host Rhode Island on Tuesday, March 3 before Mount St. Mary's on Wednesday. Both contests are slated for 6 p.m.

Postgame Notes
- Miami's seven runs in the fourth inning was the most scored by the `Canes in an inning since UM plated 10 runs in the sixth inning of an 11-4 win at Florida State on April 18, 2008.
- Freshman Harold Martinez and junior Chris Herrmann each hit their first career home run as a Hurricane, with Martinez hitting a solo shot in the fourth and Herrmann hitting a two-run shot in the sixth.
- Freshman Nathan Melendres and junior Scott Lawson each extended their team-best hitting streak to seven straight games to open the season.
- The Hurricanes reached double-digit runs for the first time this season and the first time since scoring 14 against Arizona on June 7, 2008 in the Coral Gables Super Regional.
- Miami's 20 hits on Sunday were the most in a single game since the `Canes recorded 26 against Virginia on April 24, 2004.
- Miami's 16 runs were the most runs scored by the `Canes since scoring 16 against FAU, April 1, 2008.
- Senior Dave DiNatale tied a career-high with four hits.
- Sophomore starter Iden Nazario struck out seven Gators, nearly matching his career-high eight strikeouts he set last weekend against Rutgers.
- Freshmen Ted Blackman and Vickash Ramjit each recorded their first hit and run scored in the eighth inning.
- Florida's four hits on Sunday was the lowest hit total for a UM opponent since the `Canes held Virginia Tech to four hits on May 10, 2008.

Series Notes
- The last time Miami swept a three-game regular season series over Florida was 2001, when Miami won one game in Gainesville and two games in Coral Gables against the Gators. This weekend's sweep was Miami's first three-game sweep in Gainesville all-time (Historically, the two teams played a regular season home-and-home series with two games played at each team's home field. The two teams began playing three-game regular season series in one location in 2004).
-The total attendance for the series was 12,322, establishing the third-highest total in a three-game series at McKethan Stadium.
- Miami became the first team since Georgia in 2006 (4/28-30) to sweep Florida in Gainesville.
- Senior Jonathan Weislow had the best offensive weekend for UM, leading the team in average (.444), runs (6), home runs (2), RBI (5), total bases (10) and slugging percentage (1.111). He also ranked second on the team in walks (4) and on-base percentage (.643).
-The Hurricanes hit .364 as a team while the Gators hit just .221. - UM's pitching staff had a 2.33 ERA on the weekend.
- Three UM pitchers tossed at least two innings and did not allow an earned run (David Gutierrez - 7.0, Travis Miller - 3.0, Kyle Bellamy - 2.1).
- Senior Dave DiNatale had the most hits on the weekend for UM, finishing 6-for-14 with three RBI and five runs scored.